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To the 
Officers and Fellows 
of the 

for their 
Unwearied efforts to advance the interests and improvement of 
Medical Science, and to secure harmony and unity in the Medi- 
cal profession, 

this work 


respectfully inscribed, 

by the 

The Editor. 
Burlington, 1848. 




Annual Meeting, Minutes of the eighty-first, . . 5 
Abscess near the Axilla, terminating with profuse hemorrhage, 

by the Editor. .... 190 
Annual Meeting, 1848, . . . . .222 

Ani-Prolapsus, new and successful method of treating, by Dr. Hale, 238 
Amputation during spreading gangrene, by A. S. Thomas, M. D., 

Longview, Tennessee, . . . 244 

Abscess in the left hypochondrium, by W. K. Mason, M. D. . 294 

Academy of Medicine, New York, Constitution and By-laws of 302 

Adulterated Drugs and Medicines, report on, &c. . . 305 

American Medical Association, abstract of proceedings of 1848, 316 

British and Foreign Chirurgical Review, or Quarterly Journal of 

Medicine and Surgery, &c. . - . 199 
Bill to prevent the importation of adulterated Drugs and Medicines, &c. 330 

College of Physicians of Philadelphia, quarterly summary of the 

Transactions of the, from Nov. 1841, to August 1846, inclusive, 62 
College of Physicians of Philadelphia, quarterly summary of the 

Transactions of the, from June to November, 1847, . 124 

Chloroform, Translated from the French, . . 150 

Constipation successfully treated with Croton oil, by S. S. Brooks, M.D. 179 

Chloroform, history of, by J. B. Warriner, M. D. . 182 
College of Physicians of Philadelphia, quarterly summary of the 

Transactions of the, from December, 1847, to March, 1848, 212 

Collodion, ...... 221 

Convulsions Puerperal, by Thomas McGown, M. D. . 240 

Consumption Tubercular, &c, by E. J. Marsh, M. D. . . 296 

Convention Medical, held at Lancaster, 1848, Proceedings of, 303 

Colica Pictonum, by James H. Johnson, M. D., &c. . 323 

Caustic Lunar, for Cough. . 332 


Dissecting Wounds, Remarks on, by Henry Hartshorne, M. D. 47 

Delegates, Report of, to the American Medical Association, 1848, 270 

Delirium Tremens, Etherization in, by the Editor, . . 298 
Diarrhoea and Dysentery, Chronic, Remarks on, by Thompas 

McGown, M. D. Miss. .... 327 

Ether in Labor, Report on the inhalation of, by Jonathan Clark, M. D. 

Lower Merion, near Philadelphia, . . 83 

11 INDEX. 


Epilepsy treated with Nitrate of Silver, &c, by C. D. Hendry, M. D. 105 

Ethics, Medical Code of, adopted by the National Medical Con- 
vention, 1847, .... .137 

Ether and Perchloride of Formyle, use of in Surgical operations 163 

Editorial Notices, 

Quackery, .... 130 

Births, Marriages, and Deaths, 131 

Chloroform, . . . 132 
Biography of Physicians, . .133 

Collodion, . . . 221 

Ensuing Annual Meeting, 1848. . . 222 

Biographical Records, . . 223 

A Monster, .... 224 

Our First Volume, . . . 309 

American Medical Association, . . 310 

Death of Isaac S. Haines, M. D. . 311 

Etherization in Tetanus, Observations on, with a case, &c, by 

Isaac Parrish, M. D. . . . . 233 

Eclampsia Parturientium, by Thomas McGown, M. D., Hillsboro' 

Mississippi, ..... 240 

Etherization in Delirium Tremens, by the Editor, . < 298 


Fracture of the Os-Femoris, the self-adjusting or self-extending 

Splint for, by Samuel Woolston, M. D. . 44 

Foetus, Spontaneous Evolution of, by N. W. Cole, M. D. . 108 

Femoris Cervix, Fracture of the, by N. W. Condict, M. D. . 192 

Fever, Endemic of Philadelphia, by Silas S. Brooks, M. D. . 176 

Fever, Typhus or Ship, Treatment of, by John H. Griscom, M. D. 230 


Generation, Tracts on, Translated from the German by C. R. Gil- 
man, M. D. . . . . 117 
Gastritis Chronic, a Case of &c, by D. B. Trimble, M. D. . 290 


Homoeopathy. Popular Insanity as exemplified in the favor accorded 

to, by Alexander N. Dougherty, M. D. ... 21 
Hoblyn's Dictionary of Terms used in Medicine and the Collateral 
Sciences, revised, with numerous additions, by Isaac Hays, 
M. D., of Philadelphia. . . . .63 

Hydrophobia, Report of three cases of, by William Pierson, M. D. 85 

Home Book of Health and Medicine, ... 121 

Household Surgery, or Hints on Emergencies, by John F. South, M. D. 122 




Insensibility under operations, new method of procuring, . 162 
Insanity, Professorship of . . . 163 
Insane, Report of the Pennsylvania Hospital for the, for 1847, 205 
Intelligence Medical — Delegates to the National Medical Associ- 
ation from New Jersey, . . 224 
do. do. New York, . 225 
do. do. Massachusetts, . . 225 
do. do. Philadelphia, . 226 
do. do. Ohio, . . . 226 
Pennsylvania Medical Convention, . . 226 
Medical Classes in Philadelphia, . . 226 
Pennsylvania Hospital. . . . 227 
Franklin Medical College, . . . 227 
Successor to Liston, . . . 227 
Faculty of Medicine of Paris, . . . 227 
Introductory Lectures, . . . 227 
The Body of DiefFenbach, . . .227 


Lunatic Asylum of New Jersey, by the Editor, . . Ill 

Lunatic Asylum, New Jersey, Laws, &c. adopted by the Mana- 
gers of the, 1848, . . . . .304 


Minutes of the Eighty-First Annual Meeting . . .5 

Materia Medica and Therapeutics, including preparations of the 

Pharmacopoeias of London, Edinburgh, and the U. States, 

&c, by J. Forbes Royle, M. D., &c, &c. . . 65 
Medical Society of New Jersey, Proceedings of Semi-Annual 

Meeting, 1847 , . . . .100 

Medical Society, District of Burlington, Proceedings of, 1847, 102 

Materia Medica, and Therapeutics, &c, by Marty n Paine, M. D., &c. 129 
Murder of the Van Nest family, Case of William Freeman, by 

Blanchard Fosgate, M. D. . . . 155 

Minutes of the Eighty-second Anniversary, . . 286 

National Medical Convention, held in New York, May 1846, and 

in Philadelphia, May 1847, Proceedings of the . 53 

Neck, singular Case of swelling of the, by the Editor, . . 187 

Obituary and Biographical Notices of 

Jonathan Elmer, M. D. . : 133 

John Frederick Dieffen bach/ of Hospital of Berlin, 1 36 

iv INDEX. 


Obituary and Biographical Notices of 

John Morgan, of Guy's Hospital, London, . 136 

Robert Liston, of England, . . 136 

Jonathan Johnstone, M.D. . . 169 

Lewis Johnstone, M. D. . . 170 

Robert McKean, M. D. . . .171 

Samuel Dick, M. D. . . 173 

William Forman, M.D. . . 174-255 

Thomas T. Hewson, M. D. . 216 

Jacob Randolph, M. D. . . . 219 

John S. Condict, M. D. . . 221-257 

Joseph Bell, M. D., of Edinburgh, . . 244 

Isaac S. Haines, M. D. , , . 311 

Alexander Ross, M. D. . . . 313 

David Brainard Greenman, M. D. . 313 

John Ross, M. D. . . . 313 

Stacy Budd, M. D. . . 313 

John Brognard, M. D. . . 314 

Benjamin S. Budd, M. D. . . 314 

John L. Stratton, M.D. . . . 314 

Nathan W. Cole, M. D. . . 315 

Standing Committee, Report of, for 1 846-47, . . 9 
Sulphuric Ether, Remarks on the application of the Vapor of, in 

Practical Medicine and Obstetrics, by the Editor, . 50 
Surgery, a system of, by J. M. Chelius, Doctor of Medicine and 

Surgery, &c. &c. &c. . . . ,64 

Suicide, Remarkable case of, by J. G. Graves, . . 161 
Surgery, Principles and Practice of, by the late George McClellan, 

M. D., &c. &c. . . . i . 208 

Shields' General, Wound, the nature of . . . 243 

Standing Committee for 1848, Report of . . 249 


Typhus or Ship Fever, Treatment of, by J. H. Griscom, M. D. 230 


Umbilicus, Haemorrhage from the, by E. J. Marsh, M. D. . 181 

W. . 

Wood's Practice of Medicine, . . . .58 

Wood's Quarterly Retrospect, &c. . . 123 

/t or* 






Abstract of the Minutes of the Eighty -First Annual Meeting, - - 5 
Report of the Standing Committee for 1846— '47, •? - - - 9 


Popular Insanity as exemplified in the favour accorded to Homoeo- 
pathy. By Alexander N, Dougherty, M. D., ... 21 

The Self- Adjusting or Self-Extending Splint, for Fractures of the Os 

Femoris. By Samuel Woolston, M. D., - - - - 44 

Remarks on Dissecting Wounds. By Henry Hartshome, M. D. ? - 47 

Remarks on the Application of the Vapour of Sulphuric Ether in 

Practical Medicine and Obstetrics. By the Editor, - ^50 


Proceedings of the National Medical Convention, held in New York, 

May, 1846, and in Philadelphia, May. 1847, ' - - - 53 


A Treatise on the Practice of Medicine. By George B. Wood, MD. 7 
Professor of Materia Medica and Pharmacy in the University 
of Pennsylvania; one of the Physicians of the Pennsylvania 
Hospital, 58 

Quarterly Summary of the Transactions of the College of Physicians 
of Philadelphia. From November, 1841, to August, 1846, 
inclusive, - - - - - - - - -62 

Hoblyn's Dictionary of Terms used in Medicine and the Collateral 
Sciences. Revised, with numerous additions, by Dr. Isaac 
Hays, of Philadelphia, - 63 

A System of Surgery. By J. M. Chelius, Doctor of Medicine and 
Surgery. Public Professor of General and Opthalmic Sur- 
gery. Director of the Chirurgical and Opthalmic Clinic in 
the University of Heidelberg, &c, &c, &c. Translated from 
the German, by John F. South, late Professor of Surgery to 
the Royal College of Surgeons of England, and one of the 
Surgeons to St. Thomas's Hospital, 64 

Materia Medica and Therapeutics,, including Preparations of the 
Pharmacopceias of London, Edinburgand of the United States, 
with many new medicines. By. J. Forbes Royle, M. D-, 
F. R. S. ; late of the Medical Staff of the Bengal Army ; 
Member of the Medical and Chirurgical Society of London; 
of the Medical and Physical Society of Calcutta ; and the 
Royal Medical Society of Edinburg; Professor of Materia 
Medica and Therapeutics, King's College, London. Edited 
by Joseph Carson, M. D., Professor of Materia Medica in 
Philadelphia College of Pharmacy; Member of the Ameri- 
can Philosophical Society, &c, &c, - - - - - 65 


The New Jersey Medical Reporter, 66 

The ensuing Semi-Annual Meeting, 68 

Dr. Peirson ; s Paper on Hydrophobia, 70 

Chair of Chemistry in the University of Pennsylvania, - - 70 



Report of the National Medical Convention on the Registration of 

Births, Marriages and Deaths, 71 

A Case of Complete Placenta Prsevia, turning with Perforation of 
the Placenta — Death on the third day by Puerperal Fever. 
By William C. Roberts, M. D., Editor of the New York 
Annalist, - - - 77 

Abstract of a Report on the Inhalation of Ether in Labour. By 
Jonathan Clark, M. D., of Lower Merion, near Philadelphia; 
taken from the Medical Examiner of October, 1847, - - 83 


The New Jersey Medical Reporter purports to be a medium for the 
publication of the transactions of the New Jersey Medical Society, while 
it will be devoted to the interests of Medical Science generally. It will 
be seen that the paper, type, and workmanship are of good quality, and 
we trust it may prove satisfactory to its patrons. Some space will be 
allotted in future numbers to advertisements of Medical Colleges, 
&c, &c.,if any should be sent us. The journal will be issued quarterly, 
at $2 per annum, payable in advance, or six copies will be sent to one 
address for $10. Those who wish to be placed on our subscription list 
will please make their remittances without delay. All communications 
to be sent, postpaid, to the editor, or to S. C. Atkinson, Publisher, 
Gazette Office, Burlington. 

Philadelphia Subscribers will find it convenient to leave their sub- 
scriptions with Edward Parrish, Druggist and Apothecary, north-west 
corner of Ninth and Chestnut streets, Philadelphia. 

Burlington, 10th month, 1847. 


A Semi-Annual Meeting of the New Jersey Medical Society will be 
held at Burlington, (City Hotel,) on Tuesday, the 9th of November, at 
10 o'clock, A. M. 

Wm, Peirson, Recording Secretary. 

L ; 

Note. — We would remind our friends from the northern section of the 
State, (particularly the officers of the Society,) that they cannot reach 
Burlington by the Mail Pilot Line before one o'clock, P. M., by the 
present arrangement of the Line; and we would suggest to those who 
wish to be in time for the opening of the meeting to come by the Cam- 
den and Arnboy route, or some other early conveyance, as those who 
will attend the meeting from the lower counties will arrive early in the 
forenoon. — Ed. 



VOL. I. TENTH MONTH, (OCTOBER,) 1847. No. 1. 

Abstract of the Minutes of the eighty-first Annual Meeting. 

The eighty-first Annual Meeting of the Medical Society of 
New Jersey, was held at New Brunswick, May 11, 1847. 

The President, Dr. C. Hannah, in the Chair. 

The following members appeared, viz : 

Dr. C. Hannah, President ; J. T. B. Skillman, 1st Vice Presi- 
dent; Samuel H. Pennington, 2d Vice President; A. F. Tay- 
lor, 3d Vice President ; A. B. Dayton, Corresponding Secretary; 
W. Pierson, Recording Secretary ; J. S. English, Treasurer. 
E. J. Marsh, and John Mager, Delegates of Passaic, 

W. Nichols, J. Q. Stearns, ~) u u -^ 

Alex. N. Dougherty, Fred. N. Bennett, 5 ' ^ ssex > 

J. B. Munn, L. Condict, " " Morris, 

Francis Moran, Harvey Hallock, " " Sussex, 

P. F. Brakely, William Cole, « " Warren, 

A. F. Taylor, " " Somerset, 

E. B. Freeman, J. Van Duersen, > u u Mit i d i p ™. 

A. D. Newell, 5 -Middlesex, 

J. T. Woodhull, C. C. Blauvelt, " " Monmouth, 

Isaac S. Haines, Jos. Parrish, " " Burlington, 

Jas. Risley, Chas. D. Hendry, } t , u c d 

Oth. H, Taylor, Richard M. Cooper, $ bamden, 



Jno. R. Sickler, Thos. J. Saunders, Delegates of Gloucester, 

Jno. Lilly, Samuel Lilly ? u (C Hunterdon 

Jno. Blane, H. Southard, 3 

C. Hannah, " " Salem, 

Fellows present, — Drs. L. Condict, J. B. Munn, A. Skillman, 
F. S. Schenck, G. R. Chetwood, P. S. Smith, F. R. Smith, and 
J. W. Craig. 

All medical gentleman, regularly licensed, other than mem- 
bers, were invited to take seats. 

The minutes of the two preceding meetings were read and 
accepted; also the following register of licentiates for the year, 
viz : Isaac S. Mulford, John Miller, James Lawrence Day, 
Wm. J. Roe, Horace Norton, George Willy, Albert S. Clarke, 
Cornelius Perry, Isaiah W. Condict, Dewitt Barclay, Adam J. 
Hoffman, Henry A. Hopper, Richard T. Stoutenburgh, John H. 
Phillips, Franklin Gauntt, Job Haines, Samuel Lilly, Thomas 
Edgar Hunt. 

The President now addressed the Society upon " The differ- 
ent effects arising from the operation of the same or similar 
causes." Upon w T hich the thanks of the Society were voted. 

The Standing Committee, by Dr. Pennington, made a report 
upon the general health of the State ; also respecting some in- 
formalities in the organization of the District Societies of Cam- 
den and Gloucester. 

On motion, Resolved, That the said Societies be instructed to 
make the amendments suggested by the Standing Committee, 
and that they be received as duly organized. 

The delegates from Hunterdon presented their certificates, 
which were read and accepted. 

A communication from the Treasurer was received, respect- 
ing a surplus dividend in the State Bank, New Brunswick, be- 
longing to the Society. 

On motion, Resolved, That the Treasurer be instructed to in- 
vest the above amount in stock at par, and draw any balance in 

On motion of Dr. Parrish, it was 


Resolved, That a committee of three be appointed, to whom 
the whole subject of licensing candidates be referred, with in- 
structions to report at the next annual meeting. The following 
were appointed, viz. J. Parrish, J. T. B. Skillman, and L. 

The following resolution was received from the District So- 
ciety of Burlington, through Dr. Parrish, viz : 

Resolved, That we most ardently recommend to the members 
of the profession generally, the great advantage of publishing a 
Medical Journal for the State of New Jersey, in which shall be 
published the transactions of the State Medical Society, and of 
the District Societies, including addresses and essays read at 
the meetings of said Societies, with such facts and recollections 
of the history of medical organization in this State as may be of 
interest to the profession ; and also suitable original communi- 

Whereupon, the following resolution was submitted and 

That this Society cordially approve of such publication as is 
contemplated by the District Society of Burlington ; and that 
this Society recommend to its members to give it their support; 
and that the editor be authorized to receive from the archives 
of the Society such papers as it may be deemed expedient to 
publish by the Standing Committee ; provided that the same be 
returned . 

The report of Committee on Treasurer's Accounts was ac- 
cepted ; and on motion 

Resolved, That $10 be distributed to each District Society 

Resolved, That this Society appoint two delegates to the Na- 
tional Association ; and that the several District Societies be au- 
thorized to send delegates to the same, at their option. 

Drs. Saml. H. Pennington and Joseph Fithian were appointed 

The resolutions offered by Dr. Forman at a previous meeting, 
relative to a premium forthebest essay upon the subject named, 
was referred to the next annual meeting. 


The subjects of inquiry suggested in the Standing Committee, 
were referred to the next meeting. 

The amendment of the by-laws, proposed at a previous meet- 
ing by Dr. Munn, was referred to the Standing Committee. 

Essay on Hydrophobia was read by W. Pierson. 

Specimen of Morbid Anatomy of Intestine was exhibited by 
Dr. A. B. Dayton. 

Resolved, That the semi-annual meeting be held at the City 
Hotel, Burlington, on the second Tuesday in November next. 

The following were elected officers, viz ; 

President, — J. T. B. Skillman, of New Brunswick. 

1st Vice President, — S. H. Pennington. 

2d Vice' President, — A. F. Taylor. 

3d Vice President, — Joseph Fithian. 

Corresponding Secretary, — A. B. Dayton, (Mid dletown Point.) 

Recording Secretary, — W. Pierson, (Orange.) 

Treasurer, — J. S. English, (Manalapan.) 

Standing Committee, — John Lilly, L. A. Smith, E. J. Marsh. 

Reporter for Eastern District, — Alexander N. Dougherty. 
" Middle District, — ^Samuel Lilly. 
" Western District, — Richard M. Cooper. 

Censors for Eastern District, — Drs. G. R. Chetwood, W. Pier- 
son, S. H. Pennington, and Whitehead, Essex County ; Drs. A. 
Woodruff, J. W. Canfield, N. W. Condict, H. P. Green, and 
Elmer, of Mendham, Morris Co.; Drs. F. Moran, J. R. Stuart, 
A. Linn, H. Hallock, Sussex Co. ; Drs. W. P. Clark, P. F. 
Brakeley, J. C. Fitch, R. Byington, Warren Co. ; Drs. L. Burr, 
E. J. Marsh, G. M. Terhune, J. R. Riggs, Passaic Co. 

Censors for Middle District, — Drs. J. W. Craig, A. F. Tay- 
lor, H. Van Duersen, A. Skillman, Somerset Co. ; Drs. R. W. 
Cook, A. B. Dayton, J. T, Woodhull, C. C. Blanwell, Mon- 
mouth Co. ; Drs. J. Lilly, W. Johnson, J. Blane, H. Southard, 
Hunterdon Co. 

Censors for Western District, — Drs. S. Woolston 3 Z. Read, 
J. S. Haines, J. Parrish, Burlington Co.; Drs. J. S. Mulford, J. 
Risley, C. D. Hendry, 0. H. Taylor, Camden Co.; Drs. J. Fi- 



thian; C. Garrison, J. R. Sickler, T. J. Saunders, Gloucester Co.; 
Drs. C. Hannah, J. B. Tuft, T. Reeves, Q. Gibbons, Salem Co. 
Society adjourned. 

W. Pierson, Recording Secretary. 


By the Eighth Section of the Second Chapter of the By-Laws 
of the Medical Society of New Jersey, it is made the duty of the 
Standing Committee annually to make report concerning, 1st. 
The Public Health, the prevalence, nature, causes and cure of 
Epidemics, and the occurrence of remarkable medical facts 
during the preceding year. 2d. Irregularities, neglect, and 
contempt of the laws, rules and regulations of the Society; and 
3d. Informalities in the organization of District Societies. 

In order that the Committee may be provided with the means 
of preparing a thorough report, it is made the bounden duty of 
the reporters, appointed for that purpose, to furnish them with all 
the information which they can collect relative to these subjects 
within their respective districts. It is a fact worthy of special 
commendation and congratulation as it indicates an increasing re- 
gard for the prosperity and advancement of the profession, that 
reports more or less full have this year been received from the 
reporters of each of the three Districts of the State. From these 
several reports, it appears that the people of the State have en- 
joyed an average amount of good health, that few epidemics 
have prevailed, and that these have been limited in extent and 
mild in all their characteristics. 

The first report which came to the hands of the Committee 
was that of the Reporter for the District, (the Eastern,) in which 
the members of the Committee themselves reside, and with the 
facts related in this report the observations of the Committee 
enable them fully to coincide. The report states that the 
whole District, so far as responses had been made to the in- 
quiries of the Reporter, had enjoyed very uniform good health 



and exemption from severe epidemic disease. If any exception 
be necessary from this general statement, it is in relation to the 
somewhat increased prevalence, in some parts of the District, 
of malarious diseases, such as Intermittent and Remittent Fevers. 
This has been especially observable in certain localities in the 
counties of Essex and Warren, as the vicinities of Newark and 
Elizabeth Town in the former county, and the village of Hope 
in the latter ; in all of which places, after several year's compa- 
rative respite, these diseases, during the last autumn, made their 
reappearance. The cases were not, however, very numerous, 
were generally of a mild type, and readily yielded to the ordi- 
nary treatment by which American physicians are accustomed 
to combat these diseases. In the neighbourhood of Westfield, 
lying some 7 or 8 miles West of Elizabeth Town, the malarious 
influence which, in the other vicinities, exhibited itself in the 
forms before named, was developed in the form of dysenteri? 
affections, which prevailed, as the Committee have learned 
from unprofessional sources, to a considerable extent and fatality 
in that township. As there is no practitioner residing in the 
township connected with the Medical Society, the Committee 
have not been provided with any account of the treatment pur- 
sued. The reports w T hich have been made to the Committee 
have not informed them as to the telluric and atmospheric con- 
ditions with which the malarious influence that developed itself 
in these forms of disease has been connected ; but it is not im- 
probable that the unusual and protracted heat and dryness of the 
last summer, following the heavy rains of the earlier part of the 
season, and exposing to the atmosphere, surfaces previously 
drenched with w r ater, may, in accordance with the best received 
theories on the subject of malaria, be regarded as the producing 

During the early part of the winter, catarrhal and bronchial 
affections prevailed throughout the Eastern, and, as will be seen 
from the report of that District, in the middle portion of the 
State. These w 7 ere characterized by a degree of severity and 
universality as almost to entitle them to the designation of Epi- 
demic Influenza. These affections, though not a little obstinate, 


generally yielded to the ordinary treatment, without laying the 
foundation, except in a few instances, of permanent disorders of 
the respiratory organs. 

In the latter part of the winter, hooping cough and measles 
made their appearance in some parts of the District, but in so 
mild a form as but occasionally to demand active medical treat- 

Some interesting cases of hydrophobia, occurring in the prac- 
tice of Dr. Pierson of Orange, in Essex county, were, through 
the kind attention of Dr. P., brought to the personal notice of 
the members of the Committee ; which, notwithstanding the 
prompt and active treatment pursued, terminated fatally within 
48 hours after the development of the hydrophobic symptoms, 
and in from five to ten weeks after the bite of the rabid animal. 
The Committee omit the detail of the symptoms and treatment 
adopted in these cases, as they have been led to hope for a more 
full account, than they could give, from the medical gentleman 
in attendance. The Committee would fail of their duty, were 
they not to avail themselves of the occasion here presented to 
express their condemnation of the practice sometimes fallen into 
by medical men of reputable standing, and an instance of which 
these cases brought to their notice, of ministering to popular ig- 
norance and credulity by pretending to knowledge of sovereign 
and infallible remedies for those terrific diseases which so power- 
fully awaken public anxiety and sympathy; which remedies they 
are willing to furnish to the afflicted, with particular directions 
for their use, without deigning to communicate to the attending 
physician their composition and modus operandi. The instance 
to which they have reference the Committee do not deem it pro- 
per to indicate more particularly, as it is possible that it may 
have originated in an inadvertence; and they have alluded to it 
only for the sake of expressing their condemnation of the prac- 
tice, and suggesting greater watchfulness against even inadver- 
tent violations of professional propriety. 

The Reporter for the Middle District excuses himself, on ac- 
count of severe sickness in his own family, from as minute an ac- 
count as he would desire to give of the prevailing diseases of 


his District, stating, however, as the result of his own observa- 
tion, that little had occurred which would prove interesting to 
the Committee or the Society. 

eC During the summer and early autumn," he adds, " diar- 
rhoea and dysentery were the only forms of disease that I was 
called on treat, and these, with but few exceptions, were so mild 
as to yield readily to such treatment as is common with every 
practitioner of medicine, and need not be detailed. Some of the 
cases of dysentery were severe, but none fatal." 

In the latter part of September, catarrhal affections became 
common, and have continued to the present hour without an in- 
terval of suspension, and have been characterized by the fre- 
quency of their recurrence, rather than by any other peculiarity 
of feature. Some of my patients have suffered from it five or 
six times, and I have now one who has not been free from it 
longer than a week at any one period since the beginning of Oc- 
tober. Interspersed with this disease, we had some cases of severe 
bronchial and pneumonic inflammation; one of the former I have 
now under treatment, which is yielding to the remedies com- 
monly resorted to in such affections. A few cases of diarrhoea, 
of obstinate character, occurred through the winter ; the last in 
March. Rheumatism has been more prevalent than for several 
years past, and since the first of February some cases have oc- 
curred of acute inflammation of the liver." 

The foregoing statement applies to the personal practice of 
the Reporter, and is not perhaps to be regarded as characterizing 
the whole middle district. 

From the Reporter for the Western District the Committee 
have received an interesting report, to which they cannot do 
justice by any mere abstract ; they therefore present it in full as 
communicated, premising that the Committee have received 
from the Reporter a note staring that, since the preparation of 
his report, two cases of distinct typhus fever had occurred among 
the Irish immigrants who had recently been brought into his 
neighbourhood from the alms-house in New York, within a few 
days after their arrival into the country. Their symptoms are 
described as indicating the presence of the typhus character, 


ab origini, the disease setting in with the black tongue, collapse, 
sordes tympanitis, &c. They were treated with cathartics 
and counter-irritants, and recovered, the crisis appearing from the 
7th to the 10th day. The principal report from the District is as 
follows : 

" To the Standing Committee of the New Jersey Medical 


Your Reporter for the Western District, in order to obtain in- 
formation on the several subjects committed to his charge, ad- 
dressed letters to a number of medical gentlemen in the lower 
counties, desiring them to communicate such " interesting and 
curious medical facts, discoveries and remarkable cases," as 
may have come under their notice ; but no answers having been 
received, he cannot of course, furnish a full report. In his own 
neighbourhood there has been no epidemic during the past year, 
except whooping cough, which prevailed very generally during 
the summer months, but there was no evident variation in the 
disease from its usual course. 

A very violent and fatal form of gastro-enteritis occurred fre- 
quently during the hot weather. Among the oldest practitioners 
it was thought to be an unusually malignant type of the disease ; 
the attacks generally came on suddenly, attended with violent 
abdominal pain, almost constant bilious vomiting, and obstinate 
constipation of the bowels, the pulse was rapid, and the skin 
often cool. So great was the fear of collapse # in the first stage, 
that bleeding from the arm was sometimes contra-indicated, and 
local depletion conjoined with the mercurial treatment was found 
to be the most salutary. 

Autumnal intermittents, which prevailed so generally several 
years since, have scarcely been known in this vicinity in the 
past year. This fact may be attributed in great measure to the 
improvements in agriculture, draining marshy lands, and bring- 
ing them under cultivation, &c. An exemption from this dis- 
ease in neighbourhoods which have long been subject to its an- 
nual visitations is a cause of great gratulation. 

Under the head of "new discoveries" in medicine, your re- 


porter wishes briefly to notice the vapour of Sulphuric Ether as 
a remedy for the alleviation of pain in surgical operations. It 
has been but a few months since the attention of the profession 
was directed to this subject, from the fact of a certain dentist in 
Boston procuring a patent for the discovery of a method for re- 
lieving pain in dentistical operations. Drs. Warren, Hayward, 
Bigelow and others, connected with the Massachussetts General 
Hospital, first allowed the vapour to be administered on the 17th 
of October, 1846, to a patient under their care, upon whom the 
operation of removing a tumour from the neck w T as performed 
while under its influence. Though this experiment was not en- 
tirely successful in relieving the pain, as was anticipated, it was 
sufficient to convince Dr. Warren, (the operator,) that the effect 
of this gaseous inhalation was to "neutralize the sentient 
faculty •" and he believed that if properly administered it would 
be a valuable aid to the surgeon in his efforts to alleviate human 

Upon investigation, it being ascertained that the vapour of 
Sulphuric Ether alone, separated from its impurities by washing 
without the addition of any narcotic drug, was sufficient to pro- 
duce the desired effect, and the patent being considered in- 
valid, its use was adopted in the hospital, and has since been 
employed in that institution to the entire satisfaction of the dis- 
tinguished gentlemen who have it under their charge. 

On the 18th of October, the day after the first experiment, Dr« 
Hayward removed a fatty tumour from the arm of a female 
whom he had placed under the ethereal influence, with perfect 
success. The operation lasted four or five minutes, and if the 
patient's assurances are to be relied on, she was not only en- 
tirely free from pain during its progress, but was insensible to 
surrounding objects, and was only uneasy about a child that 
she had left at home. 

On the 7th of November, Dr. Warren performed the painful 
and protracted operation of excision of a portion of the lower 
jaw, in which he asserts that the sufferings of the patient were 
greatly mitigated by the use of the ethereal vapour. 

On the same day, Dr. Hayward amputated the thigh of a 


young woman who afterwards declared that she was unconcious 
that any thing had been done to her. 

On the 12th of the same month the vapour was administered 
for three minutes to a female patient who had a large tumour 
taken from the arm, and so entirely tranquil was she that a by- 
stander who was interested in the case did not know that the 
operation had commenced till it was nearly completed. 

On the 21st, a .large tumour, covering nearly all the anterior 
part of the thigh, was taken away from a strong muscular man, 
without the patient being aware of it, until examining the 
wound created by its excision. In the extraction of teeth, the 
vapour of ether is deservedly a popular and efficient remedy for 
alleviating the pain of this simple but severe operation. 

In addition to the experiments which have been tried in this 
country, there is ample testimony from the highest authority of 
its marked success in Europe. A writer from London states 
that the use of this vapour in surgical operations is considered 
by the surgeons of the metropolis as the " most wonderful dis- 
covery of the present century," and that it is now used extensive- 
ly in private practice, and in almost every hospital. He further 
states that he has seen operations in lithotomy, hernia, amputa- 
tions, extirpation of schirrous breasts, &c, and that during the 
whole proceedings the patients have been entirely unconscious. 
In Guy's Hospital, a boy operated on for stone died a few 
days afterwards; and an unfortunate female, upon whom was 
practised the Cesarian section, died in thirty-six hours after the 
operation. In the first case the kidneys were found to be ex- 
tensively diseased, and in the latter the cause of death could not 
be directly traced to the effects of the ether. A case has been re- 
ported by Dr. Simpson, of difficult labour, which was con- 
ducted to a happy termination under the ethereal influence, 
the uterine contractions continuing regularly and powerfully, but 
without the least suffering to the woman. 

From a late number of the Gazette des Hopitaux, we find 
that the learned Societies of Paris have tested the merits of this 
discovery by a variety of experiments. At a meeting of the 
Academie de Medecine, M. Malgaigne announced that he had 


tried the American method of rendering surgical operations 
painless upon five patients. The first was afflicted with an ab- 
scess in the leg. He breathed the vapour for two minutes, the 
bistoury was used to open the abscess, and when the patient was 
aroused from his " lethargy," he expressed a wish that the ope- 
ration might be done immediately, and was much surprised to 
find that his wishes had already been complied with. 

The second had a tumour taken from the neck, was conscious 
of the operation being executed, but felt no pain. 

The third had a tumour in the neck also ; the incisions were 
made without pain, but the sufferings of the subsequent part of 
the operation were considerable. 

The fourth was an amputation of the leg : the vapour was in- 
haled for seventeen minutes ; the patient was conscious of the 
operation, but experienced no suffering. 

The last was a young man with strabismus'; the operation was 
performed with but little, if any diminution of pain. 

A patient at the Hotel Dieu, who had a compound fracture of 
the leg, had it adjusted and dressed without pain, after inhaling 
the vapour for twenty minutes. 

A case is reported by Malgaigne, of a man at St. Louis Hos- 
pital, of very strong constitution, with a phlegmonous abscess on 
the leg about the region of the malleolus : after inhaling the 
vapour for three minutes, he fell into a state resembling drunken- 
ness. Having answered in the affirmative the question whether 
his sight was dim, (a symptom which the operator considered 
proof of the effect of the remedy,) the surgeon made an incision 
in the abscess through a portion of skin that was much inflamed, 
and abundantly supplied with nerves, and pressed out the pus ; 
the patient was much agitated, his face red, his eye-lids closed, 
and the muscles of the face and superior extremities abnor- 
mally contracted ; "he appeared to be under the weight of pain- 
ful feelings which he was struggling to throw off; he lost the 
reasoning faculty, and foamed from the mouth." This con- 
dition lasted two or three minutes ; and when conciousness re- 
turned, he declared that he felt no more pain than would have 
been produced by a slight pricking of the skin, but complained 


of the smarting of the wound made by the operation. Wine 
was administered in these cases to effect a speedy recovery 
from the stupor, and this may have had something to do with 
the singular conduct of the patient. M. Velpeau had failed in 
obtaining entirely satisfactory results from his own trials of the 
remedy. One patient had proved unmanageable, another had 
suffered pain during an operation, and a third declared that he 
was thrown into such a state of ecstacy that he was unable to 
complain, while another had a tumour removed without any 

It is to be regretted that we have not in our possession more 
positive and detailed reports of all the physiological effects of 
the vapour upon the human constitution. Among the cases 
cited above, we have, in one instance, the pupils dilated ; in 
another, they are contracted, with injection of the conjunctiva ; in 
one the pulse was 88 before an operation and 92 after it, and in 
another it rose from 80 to 120 ; in several it was not affected at 
all, while in one case, where the remedy was administered in 
excess, it produced coldness of the surface and sinking of the 
pulse. One case is reported where hemorrhage occurred half 
an hour after the removal of a small tumour from over the mas- 
toid process, which suggests a caution that surgeons should be 
entirely satisfied before closing a wound that all the important 
arteries are well secured. 

The method adopted in Paris for administering the gas may 
account for the failure that occurred in several cases of produ- 
cing its legitimate effect, — the plan they pursued was to inhale 
the vapour through the nose and exhale with the mouth, or vice 
versa. The plan adopted in this country is considered more 
certain and effectual, as well as more simple and easy. 

The instrument employed, is described as a small double 
necked glass globe, containing the prepared vapour, together 
^vith sponges to enlarge the evaporating surface. One aperture 
admits the air to the interior of the globe ; when charged 
with the vapour, it is drawn through the other into the lungs, 
the inspired air thus passes through the glass vessel, while the 
expired air is diverted through a valve in the mouth-piece, and 


escaping into the apartment, is thus prevented from vitiating the 
medicated air. 

Before closing this Report it will be interesting to notice a 
few suggestions which present themselves for consideration { 
the examination of this subject. 

Sulphuric Ether is classed among the cerebral stimulants, 
medicines which act peculiarly upon the brain while they exert 
a stimulating effect upon the general nervous system, and upon 
the circulation. In sufficiently large doses, the effect of all this 
class of remedies is so powerful upon the brain as to render it 
incapable of receiving and transmitting its ordinary impressions; 
and it may readily be imagined that by urging this ethereal va- 
pour upon the system injudiciously, the cerebral influence may 
be so far paralyzed as to prevent respiration, and of course de- 
stroy life. Such has been proved to be its effect on animals. 
But so you may do with other remedies of the same class, Take 
opium, for example ; the first effect of this drug is to accelerate 
the action of the heart, — confusion of the intelligence is the next 
result, until you at last produce its full suporific effect;* and like 
the ether, it diminishes muscular strength, brings on stupor and 
stertorous respiration, w T ith insensibility to surrounding impres- 
sions : — but the peculiar tendency of the ether to allay the pain 
of severe operations, renders it the supreme remedy on such oc- 
casions. Its effects upon the system are more transient, the 
signs of its influence pass away speedily, and ^so far as we are 
yet informed, the system feels no subsequent unpleasant results : 
its operation does not continue so long as to wear out the natural 
susceptibility, but for the moment to hold it under control. 

There can be no doubt that the insensibility to pain which it 
produces must be the result of some present unnatural condition 
of the nervous system; but how this state of insensibility can be 
consequent upon an affection of the cerebral substance, and ad- 
mit of perfect consciousness at the same time, as is stated by$ 
Malgaigne, is an intricate problem in physiology, which is yet 
to be solved ; — but because it is intricate and hard to explain 
we should not lay aside as worthless the testimony of the best 
men of our profession, and refuse to acknowledge the facts which 
their fidelity in research and experiment has developed." 


In regard to the subject to which the report from the Western 
District is mainly devoted, the Committee think it right to say 
that, while there can exist no doubt of the availableness of this 
prevention of pain in many cases, as is proved by the facts so care- 
fully collated by the reporter, there have occurred several in- 
stances — some in their own neighbourhood — where unpleasant 
results inculcate the indispensable necessity of great caution in 
the use of this powerful stimulant. In one case, convulsions 
were induced, which continued for several successive days with 
great severity and frequency, awakening in the J friends and 
medical attendants the most serious apprehensions of the death 
of the patient. The opinion among medical men in Boston, 
where it was first introduced, and where the most approved modes 
of administering it are adopted, is far from being uniformly in 
favour of its general safe operation. Within a few days, a case 
has been reported, wherein it was used preparatory to the am- 
putation of a contused and lacerated fractured limb, in which, 
in the opinion of the surgeon who performed the operation, and 
who made the post mortem examination, the life of the patient 
fell a sacrifice to its administration. Even had not such facts 
occurred, the judicious physician, who knows the effect o^ 
powerful stimulants, though they are diffusible and transient, 
upon persons of^high cerebral organization, or of a delicate pul- 
monary conformation, will be slow to sanction the general use 
of an agent capable of producing such an exaltation of the ner- 
vous and arterial energies. 

There have been reported to the Committee no cases of ir- 
regularities, neglect or contempt of the laws, rules and regula- 
tions of the Society, nor have any worthy of special notice come 
to the knowledge of the Committee. The popular infatuation 
in regard to certain novelties, which have been elaborated in the 
secluded closets of German transcendentalists, has induced some 
melancholy defections from the time-honoured and well estab- 
lished principles of true medical philosophy ; but there is good 
reason to believe that these have been confined to persons whose 
natural perceptions have been too feeble, or whose intellectua 
discipline has been too imperfect, to qualify them to distinguish 


between visions and realities, and to another class less deserving 
of commiseration and more meriting contempt, whose moral 
habitudes are so loose that expediency weighs in their estima- 
tion more than truth, interest more than principle. The few 
persons who have thus made shipwreck of their medical faith, 
have wisely and seasonably withdrawn themselves from the 
honourable associations of the Society and its district organiza- 
tions, so that they are relieved from the necessity of applying to 
these cases their wholesome discipline. Still, as many of these per- 
sons are legally licensed practitioners, this Society ought perhaps 
to determine how far it will permit its members to maintain pro- 
fessional intercourse w T ith them. Some there may be, who, re- 
garding these persons as lawful physicians, think they may, with- 
out violation of professional honour, meet them in consultation 
and extend to them the right hand of fellowship ; others there 
are who decline all intercourse with them, feeling that, when 
men differ in regard to their first principles, no advantage can 
arise from consultation, and that he who abandons the system 
which he was licensed to practice, and uses his license as a 
cloak for empiricism, though he escape legal penalties, is not en- 
titled, to professional recognition. Uniformity on this sub- 
ject is very desirable, and an expression of the views of the 
Society in regard to it, is due to those who wish scrupulously 
to govern themselves by the recognized ethics of the profession. 
Another question, in connection with this subject, on which 
an expression of the opinion, if not the adoption of some regula- 
tion by the Society, seems at this time demanded, is, to what 
extent its members may humour t|pprej unices of their patients 
and their friends in favour of false:$ystems of practice, without 
forfeiture of professional good standing. The Committee submit 
this inquiry without comment, themselves believing that profes- 
sional harmony and good feeling are greatly endangered by the 
conflicting opinions and practice which prevail on this subject. 

Respectfully submitted. 


SAM'L. H. PENNINGTON, V Standing Committee. 





By Alexander N. Dougherty, M. D. 

Read at Newark before the Essex County Medical Society , May 4. 1847. 

" Homoeopathy, from its very inception, has been reared by the true Baconian 
process of inductive philosophy. Not a step has been taken which has not 
rested on facts, and the only question to decide is, whether these facts are true 
or false." Ticknor on Homoeopathy, p. 21. 

" Diseases will not, out of deference to our stupidity, cease to be dynamic 
aberrations, which our spiritual existence undergoes in its mode of feeling and 
acting — that is to say, immaterial changes in the state of health." 

Hahnemann' s Organon, p. 19. 

The ancient poets make fervid mention of the early happiness 
of our race, when, as they imagined, the earth brought forth her 
stores spontaneously, and brotherly harmony prevailed every- 
where amongst men. Arcadian bowers bloomed in Lapland, and 
the fruits and flowers that bless with their rife abundance the 
equatorial regions, then sprung and matured and withered, with 
few to pluck them, close in the neighborhood of the Poles. The 
lion and the lamb lay down together, and the infant could sleep 
securely by the mouth of the cockatrice's den. All went merry 
as a marriage bell. 

As Virgil hath it, predicting a return of that felicitous period, 

" Then mild become the years devoid of wars, 
Then Faith, Religion, and Fraternal Love 
Impose commands: the harshly-grating gatss 
Of horrid war are shuf, and impious rage 
Upon her cruel weapons seated high, 
Bound with an hundred brazen-knotted chains, 
Foams powerless from out her gory mouth." 

Then followed the age of Silver, when licentiousness and 
wrong prevailed. After this the age of Brass, violent, savage, 
and bloody. And finally the age of Iron, (in which Hesiod 
thought the world was at his day,) when Justice and Honor had 
flown to their native skies. 

Many phases has earth which bears us exhibited since, many 



cycles has it rolled through in its eternal career, but without 
ever as yet approaching the Saturnian starting-point. Alas ! for 
the Hseperian gardens and their golden fruit. They had no 
existence save in the frenzied inspiration of genius ; nor less a 
fable was the story of a golden age, unless it be an age wherein 
every man accumulates as much gold as possible. That indeed 
still exists. The auri sacra James still gnaws at the heart of 
every man, woman, and child, giving rise, among other abomi- 
nations, to the countless quackeries, one of which it is our pur- 
pose presently to discuss. 

Yes, since the beginning, the green sward of the temperate 
climes, the eternal snows that gird the poles, and the fiery sands 
of the tropics, have been alike the arena of man's conflict with 
his fellow — have looked alike upon the wrong done by the 
strong to the weak, upon the advantage taken by the crafty of 
the simple — upon the universal and infinite selfishness of the race 
wherever located. 

We have had the classic ages, distinguished for literary pro- 
ductions, which will serve as models for all time, and which , though 
gray with antiquity, are yet beautiful and fresh as the face of an 
angel; the dark ages when Art had veiled her head, and 
Science slept, and a funeral pall enveloped Christendom ; the 
chivalric ages, when for ladies' love the bold knight, lance in 
rest, and visor down, adventured every risk and " hair-breadth 
'scape ;" the age of reason, so called by that 

i: Most sage Philosopher, 

Who had read Alexander Ross over," 

with Voltaire and Rousseau to boot, thereby arriving at the con- 
clusion that religion was a farce, and morality a thing to scoff 
at, and death an eternal sleep. 

What have w T e now ? What, indeed, but the new age of 
Brass ? Our times have been variously designated according to 
the fancy or predilection of each self-constituted sponsor. Thus 
some, of a religious complexion, call this the missionary age, in 
reference to the extraordinary efforts now in progress for the en- 
lightenment and conversion of the heathen. According to others, 
interested only in prosaic affairs, it is the practical age, because 


men are now very earnest in the pursuit of bare utilities, to the 
neglect of the former poetic dreams and reveries. While others 
still affect the name of mechanical, since in mechanical contri- 
vances, from a steam engine, with its automatic might, to the 
many fingered spinning-jenny, this age is unrivalled. 

But let us see if there be not really strong and pre-eminent 
reasons for the name we have taken the liberty to confer. 

Whatever other distinctive traits the times may present, the uni- 
versal prevalence of effrontery and impudence will be conceded 
without dispute, as well as their correlative, a sawney-like sim- 
plicity, and readiness to be cheated with brass counters for true 
gold. And though the brass be rusted, though it have not even 
a thin coating of the precious metal, though the most superficial 
examination might suffice to detect the imposition, it passes 
equally current and unquestioned among large masses (we had 
almost said the majority) of people. 

True, Mrs. Mapp, the bone-setter, has passed away, but her 
place has been adequately filled by the Sweet family. St. John 
Long does not now pretend to extract mercury from the head of 
an illustrious patient, (it were easier, methinks, to find lead there,) 
but our worshipful Botanic doctors do not allow the world to 
suffer by his loss. Perkins, in spite of his metallic tractors, has 
descended to the shades, but happily his mantle has fallen upon 
the mesmeric fraternity, — Morrison's Pills (now no more) have 
begotten a numerous progeny. Brandreth's, Peter's, Hibbard's, 
Moffat's, &c, &c, &c, which, (Oh! that they had died in the 
birth,) will beget still others to tease the bowels of posterity, 
down to the latest generation — unless by an extreme reaction 
Homoeopathy and Hydropathy, discarding all medicine, should 
sway their airy and watery sceptres over an undosed world. 

Let it be observed that w T hile humbug has existed in all ages, 
it seems to have prospered most in ours. 

That, within a few years, great wonders in natural science 
have been wrought, and capabilities brought to light which had 
hitherto lain hid and unsuspected, is undeniable. No less true 
is it, that when first promulged they seemed incredible; they 
were rejected by the world, and those who proclaimed them 


subjected to contempt. Does it follow, however, that we are 
therefore , and without severe tests, to receive any new and as- 
tounding revelations respecting the operations and powers of 
nature, which any man, or set of men, may choose to unfold? 
Under this ample shield are the uncounted and Protean shapes 
of quackery, that thrust their grotesquely ridiculous or horridly 
ugly visages into every house in Christendom to take shelter, 
which only need investigation conducted in the proper manner, 
and by men properly taught, — that is taught to think, — to exhibit 
their inherent fallacy, and disappear like unsubstantial ghosts at 
break of day. 

Has not the discovery of the philosopher's stone, with its mar- 
vellous gold-producing qualities, been announced a thousand 
times? If human testimony can be relied on, has not the elixir 
vita, the guaranty of immortality on earth, rewarded the anxious 
search of numerous experimenters? And what shall we say of 
the bubbling fountain of youth that Ponce de Leon found in the 
Bahamas, wherein, if the venerable matron washed, her wrinkles 
at once were smoothed, her attenuated frame was clad anew 
with the firm flesh of youth, and long- forgotten passions pervaded 
her'renovated nature. And has not that veracious traveller, Sir 
John Mandeville, testified to having seen Prester John and his 
kingdom in the middle of Asia, and to having visited the glitter- 
ing El Dorado ? But leaving ancient fables, all of us can recol- 
lect the success of the moon hoax. Hardly a family in the land 
but contained some enthusiastic believers. 

It is useless to multiply examples. Sufficient has been said 
to show that if the world has erred occasionally by refusing cre- 
dence to actual verities, it has erred infinitely oftener by bestow- 
ing it on lies ; and by how much more numerous are the lies 
than the truths, by so much the more obstinate have we a right to 
be in demanding the clearest and most convincing proof of all 
extraordinary novelties. 

Let one, however, hesitate to admit in full the accuracy and the 
reality of clairvoyant vagaries, and at once he is assailed with 
stories of illustrious men, whose merits were unacknowledged at 
first, and whose opinions were decried until time and experience 


had established them on an incontrovertible basis. Or perhaps 
some zealous partizan of this newest of the neologies, refers 
him to the vast resources which modern discoveries have deve- 
loped in nature — to the wondrous power of steam under the 
ruling hand of art — to the electric telegraph, which with wings 
of light annihilates space, bringing the most remote places as it 
were to the same point. 

It is as if we were required to believe, that because steam 
has been successfully applied to locomotion on land and sea, it 
will also be of service in navigating the air — or because that 
subtle agent magnetism produces motion, that it must be identi 
cal with or a fit substitute for the vital principle. 

Or do you presume to doubt the efficacy of nothing injinitesi- 
mally diluted, in the cure of disease — straightway up starts an 
apostle of Homoeopathy to confront with you the shades of the 
great Harvey, or the greater Jenner, whose discoveries of the 
circulation of the blood, and the prophylactic capacity of vacci- 
nation, were for a time held in little esteem, only to be in after 
years encircled with a brighter halo, and an ever-increasing 
lustre. Nor are these the only names they quote. They press 
into service Galileo with his wondrous tube, into which the 
Paduan professor refused to look ; Sydenham, who was counted 
a murderer; Aristotle and Descartes, whose books were burnt; 
Linnaeus and Buffon,who were charged with impiety and infi- 
delity, and Ambrose Pare who was " hooted at for introducing 
the ligature in cases of amputation, as a substitute for boiling 
pitch," Thus, the persecutions which truth has experienced, 
are adroitly used to protect error, however gross, — as if on the 
ground that imperfect and partially enlightened reason has failed 
at first to receive certain truths, therefore, if a dogma revolts 
reason, it must be true. Oh ! miserable perversion of faculties 
given for high ends ! Oh! human degradation below the level 
of unreasoning brutes ! 

In scrutinizing a system of medicine, it is necessary first to 
consider its principles, as laid down in the books which are its 
acknowledged exponents, and then the results of those princi- 
ples as applied in practice. And as Hahnemann's Organon is 


(he bible of the new creed, containing the chief attempt at a 
philosophical explanation of its articles, no apology is demanded 
if we make it our text-book on this occasion, endeavouring to 
exhibit some of the fallacies and inconsistencies with which it 
abounds. The author of this treatise, Samuel Hahnemann, was 
born 1755, at Meissen, in Saxony. While at the University of 
Leipsic, where he studied with distinction, he supported himself 
by translating English medical books, one of which (Cullen's 
First Lines) he says, indirectly, begot in his head the Homoeo- 
pathic theory. For being dissatisfied with Cullen's solution of 
the antipyretic virtues of bark, he set about discovering them 
by a series of experiments upon himself; in the prosecution of 
which, he asserts that the medicine produced an ague fit. He 
immediately suspected that its curative properties depended on 
this singular peculiarity ; and the suspicion became conviction 
when he detected, as he thought, a similar peculiarity connected 
with other medicinal agents, viz : that they were able to excite 
symptoms resembling those of the diseases in which they were 
of use. For example, he states that belladonna will produce an 
efflorescence and sore throat, like those of scarlet fever, for which 
he thinks it a specific, curative, and prophylactic. So ; too, that 
sulphur will produce an eruption similar to itch, for which it is a 
renowned remedy. 

Having settled down on his principle, he began to explore 
all the books to which he had access, for cases wherewith to 
confirm it, and render it fit to present to the world. However 
questionable the authority or shape of a story, or however com- 
pletely opposite cases might neutralize it, mattered not a straw. 
If it could be tortured into a homoeopathic aspect, he compelled 
it to do duty as a foundation stone for his immortal pyramid. So 
was the Organon built. 

Its name marks the ambitious nature of the performance, and 
the self-conceit of its author. Bacon's Organon dispelled the 
obscurity of the dark ages, and swept away the hypothetical 
cobwebs and a priori assumptions of Aristotle, substituting in 
their stead the. certainties of induction. In like manner, Hahne- 
mann's Organon claims to have entered the chaos of con- 


nicting medical opinions, reduced anarchy to order, and 
derived from the confused facts of the Hippocratic system, 
hoary with the snows of twenty-five centuries, the sole law 
which governs them. The author declares Alloeopathy and 
Antipathy, the former producing different, the latter opposite 
symptoms to those of disease, to be merely palliative — to have 
no power of effecting a radical cure. He arrogates to his 
principle, the credit of the cures wrought apparently by Alloeo- 
pathy. He depreciates the efforts of nature, as miser- 
able futilities, and for the most part sections of Alloeopathy. 
For instance, p. 104, he says, "Neither the efforts of nature, nor 
the skill of the physician, have ever been able to cure disease 
by a dissimilar morbific power, whatever energy the latter may 
have possessed. " Thus he very much deprecates the crises and 
critical evacuations of nature, and which Alloeopathy imitates by 
venesection, diuretics, emetics, and purgatives. Elsewhere, with 
his ordinary inconsistency, he admits that nature does cure by 
these allceopathic means, though with much inconvenience and 
danger to the patient. 

A main dogma of Homoeopathy, and which we have quoted 
at the head of this article is, " that diseases are dynamic aberra- 
tions, which our spiritual existence undergoes in its mode of 
feeling and acting — that is to say immaterial changes in the state 
of health." Hahnemann is clearly a solidist, setting at nought 
the famous humoral pathology. Elsewhere he says, " diseases 
are not mechanical or chemical changes of the matter of the 
body," &c* 

In intimate relation with this is the notion, that the ensemble 
of the symptoms constitutes a disease. Says the Organon, " the 
ensemble of the symptoms is the principal and sole object that 
a physician ought to have in view in every case of disease— the 
power of his art is to be directed against that alone, in order to 
cure and transform it into health."]" Again, " I cannot therefore 
comprehend how it was possible for physicians, without heeding 
the symptoms, or taking them as a guide in the treatment, to 
imagine that they ought to search the interior of the human 
economy, and that they could there alone discover that which 

*Organon ; p. 91. tldem, p. 81. 


was to be cured in disease. I cannot conceive how they could 
entertain so ridiculous a pretension, as that of being able to dis- 
cover the internal invisible change that had taken place, and 
restore the same to the order of its normal condition, by the aid 
of medicine."* And the man who cc could not conceive" a 
thing which modern pathological science has illuminated with 
her concentrated light, and made plain to the merest tyro — is 
elevated into a demi-god, whom we weak mortals, in the year of 
grace 1847, are commanded to worship. 

Another cardinal principle in Homoeopathy, and the one which 
Hahnemann applies to account for the curative action of medi- 
cines, is John Hunter's fancy, that two similar diseases cannot 
co-exist, but that the stronger will expel the weaker.f In this 
connection he assumes that drug diseases make a more powerful 
impression on the nervous system than spontaneous diseases, and 
that they rouse nature under the operation of the law just enun- 
ciated, to react and expel the latter, after which their own action 
soon subsides. It is useless to quote his w r ords. Eut beau- 
tiful as Hahnemann thought his theory of re-action, and much as 
he plumed himself on it, a portion of his followers reject it. 
Sampson, an English writer, taxes it with being " contradictory, 
and based on numerous assumptions." Nothing remarkable in 
that, surely, or out of the regular homoeopathic track. Had it 
been otherwise, we might justly have doubted its paternity. He 
remarks, very properly, that "we have no sufficient proof of the 
greater strength of the medicinal disease as compared with na- 
tural diseases ; nor that the human system cannot suffer from 
two like diseases at the same time. And why, too, should not 
the vital power, which was sufficient to throw off the severer 
medicinal disease, be sufficient to throw off the natural and milder 
form." He offers then a theory of his own, to the effect, that 
the symptoms of disturbance are indications which nature gives 
as to w T hich organs are laboring and in a state of over action, so 
that when we observe this over action we may administer the 
appropriate stimulus (homoeopathic) of that organ, and thus by 
enabling it to perform what it is ineffectually endeavouring to per- 

*p. 80, Organon. fldem p. 100 


form, cause the existing evil to be thrown off and with it all dis- 
turbance to which it had given rise.* 

By the way (to illustrate how humbugs hang together, and 
how easy, like that of Avernus, is the descent down the whole 
string,) M. B, Sampson the author of the above theory, (ex- 
tracted from his ingenious and zealous work on Homoeopathy,) 
is also the author of a work on capital punishment, in which he 
advocates its abolition and propounds the startling doctrine that 
crime is owing to a malformation of the criminal's head, which 
he did not create, and that he is therefore not a responsible 
agent — Vive la humbug ! We venture to assert that Sampson, 
not so strong in the head as his namesake in the arms, will not 
succeed in pulling down the edifice of society, but that he would 
be found on enquiry a devout believer in Mesmerism, Hydropa- 
thy, Fourierism, and a dozen other isms and ys. 

To return. Sampson and Hahnemann differ in their estimate 
of natural indications. Sampson would have us implicitly obey 
them, while Hahnemann persists that they are the blind strag- 
glings of " an unintelligent vital power." Reconcile the discre- 
pancy who will. The egg is not worth the salt. 

But Hahnemann, that pink of iNconsistency, is bound to be so 
here. Accordingly, he gravely and emphatically quotes certain 
natural cures which he considers homoeopathic, and thus boasts 
of the suffrage of an agent which when it operates allceopathic- 
ally is not far removed from idiocy «t 

Another prominent doctrine of Homoeopathy relates to chro- 
nic diseases — Hahnemann derives them all from Syphilis, Sycosis 
and Psora — especially the last.t With regard to the action 
of syphilis upon the animal economy, his views are not very dif- 
ferent from those generally entertained. His treatment of 
chancres is of course highly reprehensible, rejecting as he does 
the application of caustic, and the internal exhibition of mercury 
in appreciable doses. By Sycosis he means venereal gonhor- 
rhcea, and the vegetations that spring from it. He holds that 

*Sampson on Homoeopathy, p. 212. + Organ on, p. 101 et sequent 

:j:Idem,p. 122. 



like syphilis it becomes constitutional, an opinion to which M. 
Ricord, the foremost man in all the world in a practical ac- 
quaintance with venereal diseases, would be loth to subscribe. 

While syphilis and sycosis have a considerable share in the 
propagation of chronic diseases — decidedly the diamond of the 
brilliant trio, the cynosure of the faithful believers, is Itch. 

To it nearly every chronic disease, from scrofula to corns, is 
referred, and to eradicate it, Hahnemann has a special set of re- 
medies, which he styles JLntipsorics, among which sulphur of 
course occupies the place of honor. The world, even the skep- 
tical medical world, might admit their efficacy, could the anti- 
psorics cure their illustrious classifier, and his admirers, of their 
overweening itch for the marvellous. That, alas ! is beyond 
their power. 

Most opportunely do we discourse of the marvellous, for the 
next and last grand homoeopathic dogma deals marvellously in 
it. We allude to the doctrine of infinitesimals — which, how- 
ever, the brethren may protest and deny, is as really and essen- 
tially a part of their system, as is the dictum, similia similibus 

For, against corns there are recorded no fewer than twenty- 
six remedies, among which, are Antimony, Caustic, Tin, Nitric 
Acid, Phosphorus, Phosphoric Acid, Rhus Toxicodendron, 
Silver, Yeratria and Potash — all to be administered internally. 
Now, let them be administered in full doses, and how long will 
the patient continue homoeopathic? Nay, how long will he 
continue in the world ? 

Sad cure ! for who would lose, though full of corns, 
This good material being, to perish rather 
By too large a dose of Homoeopathy 1 

Hahnemann's directions for the preparation and administra- 
tion of medicines are briefly as follows : — 

Express the juice of plants, and add an equal quantity 
of alcohol to preserve it; or if more convenient, the plant may 
be powdered, bottled, corked and stowed away in a safe place. 
Then if two drops of a mixture of equal parts of alcohol, and 
the recent juice of any medicinal plant, be diluted with ninety- 


eight drops of alcohol, in a vial capable of containing one hun- 
dred and thirty drops, and the whole twice shaken together, the 
medicine becomes exalted in energy (potenzirt) to the first de- 
velopement of power. The process is to be continued through 
twenty-nine additional vials, each of equal capacity with the 
first, and each containing ninety-nine drops of spirits of wine. 
The thirtieth, or decillionth, developement is the one in most 
general use* 

A like process is used with mineral and animal substances 
after they have been raised in the form of powder to the miL 
lionth degree.f 

Hahnemann severely reprehends the conduct of certain prac- 
titioners who carry their bottles about with them, and by the in- 
definite shaking, confer on their medicaments a formidable 
augmentation of energy. 

He says, u too strong a homoeopathic dose will infallibly in- 
jure the patient." " The dose of the homoeopathic remedy 
can never be sufficiently small, so as to be inferior to the powers 
of the natural disease, which it can at least partially extin- 
guish and cure, provided it produce an almost insensible aggra- 
vation of the disease."^: "The effects of a dose are by no 
means diminished in proportion, as the quantity of the medi- 
cinal substance is attenuated. Suppose that one drop of a 
mixture containing the tenth of a grain of any medicinal sub- 
stance, produces an effect = a, a drop of another mixture con- 
taining merely a hundredth of a grain will only produce an 
effect = _?."|| What exquisite mathematical precision ! Who 
will dare affirm henceforth that medicine is not a certain science ? 
We are indebted to Hahnemann for a law, second only to that 
which the immortal Kepler wrought out from the scroll of the 
heavens, after he had perused it night and day for so many 

u The higher the dilutions, the more rapidly and with the 
more penetrating influence do they act." He even provides for 
an exaltation often degrees above the thirtieth. 

*Organon, p. 200 tLoco. Citat. jOrganon, p. 202, et sequent. 

llOrganon, p. 206. 


Again: " Homoeopathic remedies operate with most certainty 
by smelling the medicinal aura from a saccharine globule im- 
pregnated with a high dilution. Such a globule kept in a close 
vial will retain its energy, at least from eighteen to twenty 

" In acute diseases, the dose may be repeated every 24, 12, 8, 
4, hours or oftener, but in chronic miasms, the most subtle 
dose can be repeated at intervals of 40, 50, or 100 days."f 

Having thus hastily, and without much comment, sketched 
the boldest dogmas of the system, let us briefly review them 

And when a person presents himself with extraordinary pre- 
tensions, the admission of which demands in some degree 
a confidence in his veracity, we naturally ask what sort of a 
character he has previously borne. The answer to this query in 
Hahnemann's case will be very unsatisfactory, his course pre- 
vious to the promulgation of homoeopathy, having been very 
incorrect, and, judged by a modern medical standard, very cul- 
pable. It is known, and his warmest friends cannot repel the 
charge, that he had invented and patented several secret nos- 
trums, which he sold at a high price. With so dishonorable a 
r ise, his sun might be expected to culminate in even greater 
dishonour, and it does so in his last and crowning nostrum, 
which we are now considering. 

But what sort of facts are these, and who testify for and 
against them ? Take bark, the drug with which he started. 

As far as we can ascertain, only two persons have testified to 
its ague-producing power— our author, and a Dr. Dixon, the 
founder, we believe, of the Chrono-thermal system. The 
latter gives only one case. 

Now Hahnemann's evidence after his disgraceful quackery, 
cannot be received, and Dixon's is not much better. 

On the contrary, the renowned Andral made the fullest experi- 
ments on this and other drugs, and never succeeded in repro- 
ducing a solitary homoeopathic fact4 

* Orgnon, p. 208. fldem, p. 19L 

fPereira's Elements of Materia Medica. 


And thousands of persons have used quinine and bark for 
debility and non-periodical diseases, why have not a few 
of them testified to having been thrown by it into ague ? 

Again, as to sulphur. It is hard to believe that it will pro- 
duce a disease similar to itch, unless the curious Homceopathist 
will show under the microscope; an Acarus sulphuris, about 
the shape, size and general appearance of the Acarus scabei, 
in which modern researches have proved itch to consist. 

But many of the alleged facts bear falsehood upon their very 
front. Who that has seen that terrible malady, hydrophobia, 
will believe that it either has been or can be cured by bella- 
donna, which Hahnemann reports as a sure remedy. 

And why is amaurosis not as tractable a disease, as simple 
conjunctivitis, since on his principle Hahnemann assures us that 
belladonna will control it ? 

Henceforth we have no reason to dread tetanus, since all 
kinds of it are cured by caustic potash, if we may believe Stutz 
and Hahnemann. 

The most obstinate constipation, ileus itself, may be derided, 
since it bows to the power of lead in bullet form — nor, we are 
informed, did these pills operate by their weight, for then gold, 
which is heavier, would have answered the purpose. Hahne- 
mann forgets that lead is rather the cheapest. 

Again: others of the alleged facts, like the last, if admitted, are. 
wholly inapplicable, or can be explained without the aid of 

For instance, arsenic will cure angina pectoris, for Tachenius 
and Thelanius have seen it give rise to strong oppression of the 
chest, a thing likely enough to happen, when the subject was, 
from its effects, about ceasing to breathe entirely. 

Unrecognized idiosyncrasy is forced into the ranks of the 
new doctrine. Hahnemann and Sampson quote cases of ex- 
treme susceptibility to the action of ipecac, — that drug, in the 
minutest quantity afloat in the air, bringing on in certain per- 
sons of very irritable fibre, severe paroxysms of asthma, which 
it will relieve in others. But some will fall into convulsions at 



the sight of a cat. Is any part of a cat therefore remedial in con- 
vulsions ? A lady was thrown into a similar state, whenever a 
plate containing pease boiled in mint, f Vas set before her. Are 
pease boiled in mint therefore to have a place in the Materia 
Medica Pura ? 

Hahnemann gravely relates that the Princess Maria Porphy- 
rogerita, restored her brother, the Emperor Alexius, from a state 
of syncope, by sprinkling him with rose water, and he refers 
the cure to the properties of rose water. 

The cure of ileus by opium, of scalds and burns by heating, 
and of frost-bites by cooling applications, of dysentery by purga- 
tives, of diarrhoea by rhubarb, the prophylaxis of the vaccine 
disease, and many other facts to which he exultingly points as 
proofs of his theory, can be perfectly well explained without it. 

To avoid the trouble of too frequent reference, we may state 
that the above facts and many more are scattered throughout the 

But do the principles deduced from the facts narrated in the 
Organon, stand the test of modern discovery in chemistry, 
pathology and therapeutics ? By no means. It is not true that 
diseases are not mechanical, or chemical changes of the material 
substance of the body, &c. Disease may originate in a mental 
cause, may first invade the nervous system, but both mental and 
bodily maladies often have evidently a material, even mechani- 
cal and chemical cause, as when a spicula of bone presses on 
the brain, producing insanity or epilepsy. 

But however disease may be lighted up, from the moment of 
its inception, it is accompanied and essentially modified, by the 
most serious changes of the nature, above indicated. 

McGregor and Malcolm have investigated and published the 
variations which the quantity of carbonic acid in expired air 
undergoes during disease.* 

Becquerel and Rodierf have, by a series of careful and elabo- 
rate experiments, both demonstrated the principle, and settled 

*London and Edinburgh Monthly Jourri. of Medical Science, 1843 ; p. i- 
tGazette Med. de Paris for 1844. 


the exact character of the changes in the composition ot the 
blood, in different diseases. 

Thus they have deduced eight laws, the first of which is that 
" the simple fact of the development of a disease, almost always 
modifies in a notable manner the composition of the blood." 

The remainder relatetothe changes of the blood, both chemi- 
cal and mechanical, accidental and essential, in anaemia, inflam- 
mations, fevers and urinary diseases. 

Andral sustains these conclusions with the weight of his un- 
impeachable authority.* 

Again : pathology disproves, " that the totality of the symp- 
toms constitutes disease." Necroscopy developes extensive 
alterations of the tissues after the occurrence of violent pheno- 
mena. Now if in a hundred cases after an unmistakeable and iden- 
tical set of phenomena, we meet with the same alterations, it is 
perfectly, legitimate to infer the dependence of the former upon 
the latter, in the relation of effects to their causes. The disease 
consists in these changes, and it would be as ridiculous to assume 
the identity of the phenomena, and the thing exhibited, as to 
pretend that cause and effect are the same. 

But the homceopathist laughs at the idea of ascertaining during 
life, and combating these changes. 

Take a case of pneumonia — how do the rival schools view 
and treat it ? The scientific and skilful alloeopathist, sees and 
considers symptoms, which mean anything, as much as his rival. 
Nay, the cough and fever, and full hard pulse, and pain in the 
chest, and dyspnoea, have to him more significancy than to the 
other, for they decipher to him in plain characters inflammation 
of the lungs, while to the other they are unmeaning phenomena, 
to be covered by those of a drug-disease. When we come to 
physical signs, (vastly the most important,) the alloeopathist has 
the advantage. Not a single physical sign is regarded in homoeo- 
pathy. Now by their aid, the regular physician may be said to 
know almost as certainly, as if there were a window in the 
patient's chest — the condition of the suffering' organs — whether 

* Andral on the Blood. 


the disease is advancing or receding under his treatment, and 
what will be its termination. 

Let the vender of sugar pills and powders, boast of the atten- 
tion he pays to the most minute symptoms. What would it 
avail one who wished to have in his eye a correct image of 
another, to know merely the precise number of his hairs, teeth 
and wrinkles ? 

The homoeopathist is that besotted being. The alloeopathist 
gains a knowledge of the whole outline, the prominent features 
of a disease, rejecting with contempt useless appearances. 

Having seen which of our two friends pursues the rational 
course to learn a disease, let us examine which of them treats 
it rationally, 

If summoned during the early stages of pneumonia, the alloeo- 
pathist practises venesection, and exhibits saline purges and 
antimony, both to diminish the volume of the blood, (become 
too great since its equilibrium was disturbed,) and the force of 
the heart's action, which tend to keep up and increase the ex- 
isting congestion ; and next he administers mercurials till the 
system is affected, because they have been proved to prevent 
the formation of fibrin, which abounds in inflammation. 

On the other hand, the homoeopathist, under the sanction of 
his motto, " si nonjuvat, ne noceat" does awful injury by doing 
nothing. He turns over the pages of Jahr's Manual, reads a 
collection of trashy pathogenetic effects, and selects the remedy 
which seems best to suit the disease. He puts two or three 
drops into a tumbler of water, and orders a tea-spoonful every 
two hours. 

There are the methods side by side. Compare them. The 
alloeopathist relieves nature staggering under a load too heavy 
to bear, the homoeopathist administers a remedy, which in full 
doses will, he believes, aggravate the complaint — and whichin 
the doses actually used, only a worthy candidate for Bedlam 
could conceive capable of producing the least effect. 

It becomes a matter of interest to know how Jahr's Manual, 
on which homoeopathists so implicitly rely, was composed. 
Page 144 of the Organon tells us : "Any one, even of those 


medicines whose virtues are considered weak, is now found to 
be most advantageously investigated, if from four to six minute 
saccharine globules, impregnated with the thirtieth dilution, be 
given to the experimenter, every morning fasting, and continued 
for several days." Now we merely hint, that imagination may 
have had a slight share in the origin of the manifold pathogene- 
tic effects detailed in that veracious and inestimable book. 

It is remarkable that cinnabar and corrosive sublimate and 
muriate of baryta, and muriate of gold, have a much smaller 
space allotted to their effects, than sulphur and chalk, and cha- 
momile and pulsatil, and flint — which are commonly classed 
among nearly inert substances. So much for homoeopathic 

The next point on which Hahnemann lays stress, is that of 
the incompatibility of two similar diseases. Since, however, 
Satan is here divided against himself, we will leave this part of 
his kingdom to fall without discussion. 

The last remaining point in Hahnemannism is the size of 
the doses. We need only briefly advert to it, before a society 
composed of thinking practical men, who are already as well 
acquainted with it as they wish to be. It is the point to which 
homoeopathists in this country, feel ashamed to acknowledge 
their full adhesion, and they squirm and wriggle like a salted 
leech when it is pressed home upon them. Nevertheless, we 
have quoted Hahnemann's own words, which he repeats and 
amplifies to complete stultification, in his work on Chronic 

Mathematicians have gone into erudite calculations of the 
number of Caspian Seas requisite to make the thirtieth dilution. 
It is certain that notwithstanding the strictest regard to the pre- 
scribed regimen, which excludes tea, coffee, acids, salt meat, 
and many more edibles and potables, the patient neutralizes his 
medicine a hundred times a day. Does be drink a glass of 
water? Unless it is distilled, he swallows a quantity of saline 
matters sufficient to overwhelm the medicine. 

And if he inhale the ethereal potence, in a room which has ever 
contained a bottle of cologne, what becomes of the simple unity 


of the homoeopathic dose ? Half the fragrant odours of the 
perfumer enter his nasal organ with it, and sadly disturb its salu- 
tary operation on his spiritual economy. 

Hahnemann exultingly points to the deadly potency of a drop 
of concentrated prussic acid, in proof of the activity of as much 
of the thirtieth dilution of clam shells. It would not surprise us 
to hear him affirm, that the electricity in a cat's back can cure 
disease, because men have been killed by lightning. We should 
like, if we had time, to answer and explode his vaccine, and 
small pox, and typhus fever illustrations, but the fear of exhaust- 
ing your patience, warns us to draw our remarks to a close. 

And in concluding this lengthy, and somewhat rambling essay, 
which would have been shorter and more consecutive had 
leisure during the past week permitted, the writer cannot omit a 
word or two respecting his personal experience and observation. 

It is known to some of the gentlemen of the Society, that we 
commenced our professional studies under the auspices of a 
votary of the new science. Ignorant of the first principles of 
the rational healing art, struck with the plausibility of the theory, 
(for it has plausibility) and unversed in any save homoeopathic 
practice, it is not surprising that, with the confidence of partial 
knowledge, we zealously maintained our preceptor's dogmas. 
A course of medical lectures and clinical observation, soon shook 
the pillars of our faith, which presently toppled down headlong 
under the conviction induced by a series of experiments, and a 
perusal of standard works ; so that after a year and a half spent 
in assiduous cultivation of homoeopathy, in researches among 
alloeopathists for illustrative and corroborative facts, as we fondly 
hoped not without success, we abandoned it as an intangible 
chimera, a shadow of a shade, and have remained till to-day its 
undisguised contemner, its uncompromising foe. Having been 
behind the scenes, we can speak positively of American homoeo- 

And we charge American homosopathists with recreancy to 
Hahnemannic infinitesimalism. 

Indeed, Germany a is the sole country on the globe where that 
octrine could flourish vigorously. A country where thought on 


political subjects can have no vent, because of the surveillance 
of the censorship, and because of an organized all-pervading 
system of espionage, almost demanding the secrets of men's 
hearts, is just fitted to foster metaphysical vagaries of the wildest 
order, rivalling in their fantastic gambols the poetic flights of 
Grecian and Roman mythology. Kant, and Hegal, and Fichte 
and the rest of the German metaphysicians, are no more transcen- 
dental than Hahnemann. What in their line can surpass the 
doctrine, that as the soul is the active principle in the body, so 
the matter of medicines merely encloses a spiritual essence; and 
as the soul must be freed from its gross corporeity to exhibit its 
full perfections/ so the matter of medicines must be divided infi- 
nitesimally to allow their spiritual essence to work best on the 
human spirit ? 

Who of the ignorant bu thard-to-be-cheated crowd, that adu- 
late homoeopathy and its founder, would swallow so gossamer 
an idea as that ? 

It will not go down with our Yankees, nor can the practi- 
tioners themselves believe it. Accordingly, instead of the thir- 
tieth dilution, they prescribe the first dilution and trituration, or 
even the mother-tincture * Instead of repeating the doze 
every four, eight, twelve hours, or forty or one hundred days, 
they give it every hour or two. Instead of being satisfied with 
a single remedy suitably selected, they administer several suc- 
cessively, marked one 3 two, three, four, &c, a combination 
which in Hahnemann's view would be as abominable as 

We charge them, moreover, with violating public confidence, 
and betraying their want of faith in their system, by frequently 
falling back on allceopathy, sometimes openly, oftenest fur- 

*We saw lately some homoeopathic pills, quite as large as any noticed 
in Wood and Bache. It has been discovered that the minute globules 
are very provocative of ridicule, and hence the substitution of pills of 
respectable size 


lively.* We venture to affirm from our knowledge of a univer- 
sal custom among the fraternity, that not a man of them, whe- 
ther here or elsewhere, hesitates to administer or to take on 
occasion a purgative, an anodyne, or even that object of popular 
antipathy, calomel. 

A friend of ours was once called to a homoeopathic patient 
profusely salivating from the effects of sugar powders. And to 
this we may add our acquaintance with a similar and most dis- 
tressing case, in which the patient protested that she had taken 
homoeopathic medicine, because it contained no calomel. 

We have a vivid recollection of the many instances in which 
morphine has been given in our presence, as a homoeopathic 
medicine to allay pain. 

We confess to having administered, during ourtutelage, and in 
moments of wavering faith, for an attack of colic, first nux 

*The following incident is in point : — 

Death from Trifling with Homoeopathy. — A coroner's inquest was 
held in Stockport on the 18th of July inst, on the body of Martin Van 
Sickler, who came to his death on Friday last, under the following cir- 
cumstances. He called on Dr. John H. Philip, a homceopathic physi- 
cian, for some pills for a pain in the side, &c. Dr. Philip gave him two 
vials of pills, one containing twenty-four, the other thirty -two pills, with 
written directions to take one three times a day, and if it produced any 
burning pain, then to take but one half of one at a time. It seemed 
from the testimony on the inquest, that Van Sickler's illness was feigned, 
and that there was an understanding between him and Dr. Schermer 
horn, of Stockport, that he should get the pills and take them, for the 
purpose of ridiculing Dr. Philip and his medicine. Dr. Schermerhorn 
assured Van Sickle, that he need not be afraid to take the whole lot, as 
they would hurt no one. Accordingly, Van Sickler took the w r hole of 
the pills, under the advice of Dr. S. ; and the result was his death about 
one o'clock the next morning. 

Dr. Philip testified that he was called on the night of the 16th, by Dr. 
Schermerhorn, who wished him immediately to go and see deceased. 
Dr. P. told him it was useless if he had taken all the medicine he sent 
at once, as it would produce death. 

According to the testimony of Dr. Witbeck, of Hudson, the diseased 
came to his death by taking an over-dose of strychnine and arsenic pills. 
Accordingly the jury found that he so came to his death by taking the 
medicine contrary to the direction of Dr. Philip. — Kinderhook Sentinel. 


vomica, to be followed in an hour by colocynth, backed up as 
a last resource by a stiff dose of morphine. 

A druggist informed us, that he was personally cognizant of a 
case, where the powders, professedly homoeopathic and pre- 
scribed for a child, contained croton oil. 

Hahnemann opposes anthelmintics, but that does not deter 
his followers from using them liberally.* Our philosopher 
appears to have resembled Saint Augustine. It is related of 
the holy father, that when certain parasitic insects fell from his 
head, he picked them up tenderly, and, in quite an uncle-Toby- 
like temper, replaced them saying, " poor beast return where thy 
Creator and mine intended thou should'st reside." Hahnemann 
had in like manner a fellow feeling for intestinal worms, which 
his followers incontinently expel. 

Farther, we charge them as a body, with wanton falsification. 
They, forsooth, cure every malady. We have heard them boast of 
never losing a case of scarlet fever, convulsions, &c. when, we 
knew of several that they had lost thereby. They tell stories of any 
complexion to suit the taste of their auditors. They persuade 
the timid that their medicaments are harmless, should they do 
no good.t and to the incredulous, on the score of doses, they 
pretend that the same medicaments are highly concentrated, and 
endued with terrible energy. 

They magnify little diseases by conferring on them sounding 
titles. A catarrh is with them inflammation of the lungs; 

*Organon, p. 12, 

Hahnemann also, (p. 90) expressly excepts surgical diseases from, 
the sphere of his operations, but one of his followers in this city adver- 
tise to cure such diseases without the aid of the knife, and actually 
gave powders for months to promote the absoiption of fatty tumours ! 

Another allowed retention of urine to exist for a whole week in a wo- 
man after confinement, and at length acknowledging the necessity for 
surgical interference, excused himself on the ground of having no catheter. 
The gentleman who was then called, drew off six quarts of urine. 

tA zealons advocate of homceopathy, lately strenuously denied, in our 
hearing, on the authority of her physician, (homoeopathic) that they 
ever used poisons, 



a diarrhoea, inflammation of the bowels ; a gastric headache, in- 
flammation of the brain. 

It was so, doubtless, that they cured so much larger a propor- 
tion of cholera patients, than their competitors. An authentic 
case in point occurs to us. During the prevalence of cholera, 
a woman was picked up at night in the streets of Munich, and 
carried to a private homoeopathic hospital. She was comatose* 
The sisters of charity, who undressed her, reported with pale 
faces that she was in articulo mortis, for that her lower extremities 
were already livid. Homceopathywas applied apparently with sue* 
cess. Next morning, the doctor called his friends to witness the 
miraculous cure, when lo! it was ascertained that the woman 
had been drunk, and that the blueness of her legs was owing 
to her having worn stockings of that colour. 

In fact, they rarely have a case of acute disease to treat, the 
symptoms of such diseases generally frightening the patient and 
his friends into calling a physician, who will " do something," 
as the phrase is. 

Homceopathist3 plume themselves on their success in secur- 
ing the patronage of the rich, forgetting that the fact makes 
against them, since that class are little exposed to the invasion 
of acute diseases, while they are the victims of hypochondria, 
hysteria, and the various forms of nervousness.* 

When indeed inflammation of an important organ falls into 
homoeopathic hands, its course being unchecked, its end is la- 

*The extirpation of quackery can only be effected by enlightening the 
people ; and no object is more worthy of the kind attention of beneficent 
men who have bequests to make. Instead of pouring their superfluous 
wealth into the coffers of already plethoric institutions, we would respect- 
fully suggest that some of them bestow means to found lectureships for 
the free and general diffusion of popular information upon Anatomy, 
Physiology, Pathology, and the grand principles of the treatment of 

When they have learned the capability of unassisted nature, often to cor- 
rect aberrations from a state of health, as in fevers, and in slight inflam- 
omations, the public will cease to rely on the futilities of infinitesimalism, 
or to believe that because recoveries sometimes occur after the use of 
qtiack nostrums, they are necessarily attributable to them. 


mentable, unless unassisted nature be competent to expel it. A 
gentleman of this Society, has now in treatment a case of severe 
pnuemonia, where a homoeopathist attended during an entire 
week, diligently plying, we presume, his aconite, pulsatilla and 
bryonia ; in spite of which the disease had marched steadily 

And herewith we bid adieu to homoeopathy, a system hold- 
ing to singleness of prescription, yet itself compounded in equal 
proportions of fraud and folly; advocating minuteness of dose, 
yet commending immense doses of nonsense to the gullibility of 
its patrons ; claiming to be strictly scientific, and to demand the 
profoundest learning from its professors ; yet well and properly 
practised by a crazy old woman, who has furnished herself with 
a medicine chest, and a homoeopathic pamphlet. Time will 
overthrow this mansion of mud, which the rats who inhabit it 
expect will be eternal. Let them beware lest it tumble down 
about their ears, and bury them in its ruins. 

May the profession, as heretofore, be true to themselves and 
their noble art, opposing quackery in its every manifestation, 
and despising, in the consciousness of a manly integrity, what- 
ever present disfavour a foolish public may therefore show 

Thus will they touch, as with thespear of Ithuriel, the lying 
toads that have the ear of the world, and Time at length will be 
their vindicator. 

Newark, May 4, 1847. 



By Samuel Woolston, M. D. 

A. Main shaft. B. Grooved slide. C. Foot board. D. Perineal 
crutch. E. Spiral springs. F. Pin to attach shaft and slide, a. Ratchet 
for spring d. to play upon. b. Button to attach strap from f. f. c. c. 
Holes containing spiral springs, d. Steel spring to play upon ratchet, a. 
e. e. Legs of crutch to press upon spiral springs in holes, c. c. f. f. 
Buttons for strap fastened at b. g. g. Holes forpin, F. h, h. Holes on 
foot board for gaiter straps. 

This splint, to fit a common sized man, should have a main 
shaft about twenty-six inches long, four inches wide at the supe- 
rior, and three inches at the inferior end, and nearly one inch 
thick, with bevelled edges. In the centre of the inferior end is 
an open tongued mortice, fifteen or sixteen inches long, and an 
inch or more wide. In the superior end are two parallel auger 
holes, an inch or more apart, running lengthwise with the shaft, 
and seven or eight inches in depth, between which externally is 
a steel ratchet, seven or eight inches long. A grooved slide is 
made to fit and move in the mortice of the main shaft, as a 
means of adapting the splint to a limb of any length. At the 
inferior extremity of this slide is attached a square foot-board, 
perforated with four holes. When the required length is ob- 
tained, the slide may be fixed by means of pins passing through 
holes which perforate it in its whole length, at about an inch 
apart, communicating with three or four holes at the inferior end 


of the slide. A pair of spiral springs is placed in the auger 
holes at the upper end of the main shaft : which constitute the 
extending power. A padded crutch of the same width and 
thickness of the shaft, is placed at its superior extremity, having 
two legs or rounded slides adapted to play in the auger holes 
containing the spiral springs, and intended to press upon them 
when the splint is applied to the limb. On the exterior side of 
the crutch is a steel spring or hand, which plays Jipon the 
ratchet on the corresponding side of the shaft, in order to secure 
all the extensive power of the springs. A few knobs or buttons 
on the bevelled edges of the splint, and one on each end of the 
perinseal crutch, are convenient to attach straps or bandages to, 
for securing the splint to the thigh, and for other similar pur- 
poses. Before applying this splint, the patient should be placed 
in a recumbent position, his injured limb extended and abducted 
eight or nine inches out of a straight line with his body, and a 
gaiter put upon the foot and ankle, with the bandage of Scul- 
tites to the thigh ; the padded crutch should then be pressed 
down upon the spiral springs, so as to rest upon the superior 
end of the shaft, and be placed against the perineum; the gaiter 
is next fastened to the block at the inferior end of the grooved 
slide ; the length of the splint should now be adjusted, and 
secured by the pins in the bevelled edge -of ~the shaft ; the proper 
degree of extension will be known by the straps of the gaiter 
being drawn tight, and by the pad pressing firmly against the 
perineum. Three short splints should now be applied to the 
thigh, one posteriorly, one anteriorly, and one externally, and be 
safely secured by straps or bandages attached to the main splint. 
The padded crutch should be liberated from its close attach- 
ment to the shaft, so as to admit the free motion and force of 
the spiral springs ; and the whole limb should be placed upon a 
soft pillow or bolster. To each splint there should be four 
springs, one having a force of three, one of six, one of nine, 
and one of twelve pounds, so that the surgeon can regulate t the 
power of extension according to the requisite demand. No more 
extending power should be applied, than is necessary for the 
successful treatment of the case ; and we believe that very little 



is necessary, after ossific matter begins to be deposited around 
the fragments of the fractured bone. 

The mechanism of this splint, I think has been made to cor- 
respond with the mechanism of the thigh ; the extension is from 
the perina?um, and counter extension from the ankle. When a 
person lies in a horizontal position or sits upright, with the 
thighs in contact, the distance from the trochanter to the condyle 
of the os femoris, is much greater than from the perinseum to the 
condyle of the same bone ; but let the thigh be abducted to its 
fullest extent, the distance from the perinasum to the condyle will 
be' as great, and sometimes greater than it is from the trochan- 
ter : this length is gained at the perinseum, therefore the extend- 
ing power should be there ; such is the arrangement of this ap- 
paratus, while the retaining power is there also. Let abduction 
take place either by the motion of the limb or of the body, the 
length of the splint will adjust itself to the increased length of 
the thigh. If the counter extending bands become relaxed, it 
will also tighten them. If perpetual extension will keep a frac- 
tured thigh from becoming shortened, this splint will accomplish 
that end. In luxation of the hip-joint, I see no reason why the 
lever can not in some instances be used, instead of the pulley 
or other means of extension for the purpose of reduction. I do 
conceive that a luxation could be reduced by first abducting the 
limb to its fullest extent, then taking an ordinary crutch, and 
pressing the pad on the perinceum of the sound side, fastening 
the knee or ankle securely to the shaft, and then abducting it ; 
an extension of three or four inches could be obtained in this 
way. Any person, with common intelligence, could produce 
an extending power of more than a thousand pounds, if required, 
being directed by the surgeon, while the latter w T ould be at 
liberty to manage the thigh according to his pleasure. I have 
never treated a dislocation in this way, but all the cases of frac- 
ture of the os femoris, where the self-adjusting splint has been 
used, have terminated without deformity. 

Vincenttown, September 8th, 1847. 

Note. — Dr. Woolston's splint has certainly the merit of sim 
plicity in its construction, and may be very conveniently carried 


from place to place by the country practitioner. The Doctor 
has kindly left one with us, and shown us a recommendatory 
certificate signed by several physicians of this county. We hope 
the apparatus may be fairly tried. — -Ed. 

By Henry Hartshorne, M. D., 

Resident Physician to the Pennsylvania Hospital. 

In these affections, the writer has had some positive expe- 
ience ; having been twice very severely affected, besides 
seeing and being cognizant of several cases among the residents 
and nurses of the hospital at different times. The first of my 
own attacks, and the most serious, was caused by pus from the 
living body; the other was strictly a dissecting wound. A full 
account of the former was published in the American Journal 
of Medical Sciences, for April, 1846. 

From these cases, then, carefully studied, I infer: 

1. That there is a poisonous property in many dead bodies, 
and in pus and other morbid products of diseased living bodies, 
which makes it dangerous, much more to some constitutions than 
to others, for these matters to touch the abraded skin. I am 
aware that this is doubted by some very respectable physicians, 
who ascribe the symptoms in all cases to the state of the consti- 
tution of the person; asserting that exactly similar effects have 
resulted from slight wounds of any kind, where a virus could 
not possibly be suspected. 

Such cases have occurred, doubtless; such idiosyncrasies or 
vitiated states of body, rendering any injury serious and perilous, 
ao exist. But from the history of my own system, and its acci- 
dents alone, I am thoroughly convinced, that there is a cause, 
external to the body, vastly more liable to be followed by painful 
and dangerous results than any mere wound ever is. 


2. That the affection, certainly in my case, is inflammatory ; 
and commences with inflammation of the lymphatics, which ab- 
sorb the poisonous matter, and carry it along their trunks, light- 
ing up inflammation even to the axilla or farther. 

The evidence of the distinctness in character between this 
angioleucitis and erysipelas, is also plain. They may exist to- 
gether ; violent erysipelas is almost always accompanied by an- 
gioleucitis ; but the one is inflammation of the skin, diffusive, 
general; the other of one set of absorbents only, and often 
clearly marked by locality in them alone. I have seen, in my 
own person, and in repeated instances in patients, a considerable 
inflammation of the lympathic vessels to the whole length of an 
arm or leg, with no diffuse inflammation of the skin whatever, 
and therefore without erysipelas. 

3. In my first case an abscess formed in the axilla, three 
weeks after the wound. Now this was not a metastatic ab- 
scess, from' transfer of pus from the inflamed hand, or even 
from the original pus inoculation ; it was the result of violent 
lymphatic inflammation, terminating finally in suppuration. 
This is proved clearly by the length ot time which elapsed be 
fore its appearance, and the complete hardness of the tumour for 
a week or two after it became apparent and painful. 

4. From this establishment of the inflammatory character of 
the affection, then, it is to be deduced of course, that the treat- 
ment should, as a general rule, be antiphlogistic. There may, 
however, be constitutions whose w T ant of vigour requires that 
depletion and reduction should be only local ; I have seen no 
such instance yet. 

In my second attack, I was at once more freely depleted, and 
dieted more perseveringly than in the first ; and the constitutional 
symptoms were much less violent and protracted. 

The recovery of George O'Brien, assistant nurse, may illus- 
trate what I believe to be the best mode of treatment. 

The day after the side of his'thumb was punctured by a needle 
in sewing up a body, it swelled and grew very stiff and painful, 
and redness followed the lympatic lines up to the arm-pit. 

He at once was directed to take an ounce of epsom salts, and 


knock off all animal food, (his fever was not high enough for 
the lancet,) and also had at once a score or more of foreign 
leeches applied to the thumb. A blister was then put upon the 
wrist and allowed to vesicate. Cold water was kept to the 
hand at first, and then simple cerate. I avoided a poultice, be- 
cause it had increased the pain to torture in my own case. The 
low diet was kept up, with rest to the arm in a sling. In three 
or four days he was well. 

It may not be amiss to repeat, that a flaxseed poultice increased 
the agony of my first night of the last attack three-fold, while 
cold water constantly applied gave great relief. The inflamma- 
tion in this case took on more the character of diffuse erysipelas; 
my first was one of pure angioleucitis alone. 

On about the fifth day of the former, when the violence of 
inflammatory action had somewhat abated, and suppuration was 
contending with a slight tendency to sloughing, great relief and 
improvement was derived from a blister which my father directed 
immediately over the back of the hand, then enormously swelled. 
It finally pointed, and was opened almost exactly over the first 
joint of the fore-finger. For two or three days a bloody sanious 
pus was discharged, and, for two or three weeks, serum to the 
amount of a teaspoonful daily. A sinus, which existed through 
to the palm of the hand, finally closed, and the opening healed 
up. A great deal of lymph w 7 as thrown out, fastening all my 
fingers, especially the fore-finger and thumb, in false anchylosis; 
gradually it was all absorbed, except that which glued together 
the perforans and perforatus tendons of the affected finger. This 
remains yet, after several months, so that I have no flexor power 
over the last two phalanges of that finger, although the joints are 
perfectly free and limber. 

8th mo. 23d, 1847. I find upon my notes that I just escaped 
another attack, threatened in consequence of the prick of a. pin, 
while dressing cases in the ward. As the puncture was not 
deep enough to draw blood, I had paid no attention to it. In 
all instances in which I have thoroughly sucked the wound in- 
stantly, no symptoms have resulted. I believe this preventive 
more effectual than caustic. Here, however, so great was my 


susceptibility, that in from twelve to sixteen hours the red line 
reached the axilla ; but rest, low diet, mild purgation ; a ley 
poultice, or rather a piece of lint soaked in ley and covered with 
oiled silk, applied to the part, but still more important, foreign 
leeches and a blister , arrested it completely. 

The manner in which ablister acts upon a recent case ofangio- 
leucitis is not obvious, but several instances of its efficacy have 
been narrated to me, and above are two similar. The best place 
for it appears to be about the middle of the inflamed line — say 
about five inches by two. 

By attending to the precaution of instantly sucking with care 
a dissecting or pus wound, there is reason to suppose that a 
large majority of these unpleasant, and occasionally fatal, inflam- 
mations might be altogether prevented ; but after they have com- 
menced, no delay should be allowed in the immediate applica- 
tion of at least free local depletion, and the observance of perfect 


By the Editor. 

In the report of the Standing Committee of the New Jersey 
Medical Society, which will be found in another part of this 
journal, several pages are allotted to the detail of experiments 
with sulphuric ether in surgical operations, &c. Since the period 
when these experiments were tried, the evidence in favour of 
the ether inhalation has been constantly increasing, with such 
authority and force, that we devote a few moments to its further 
examination. In surgery, its use has been sufficiently tested, by 
some of the rnpst distinguished surgeons of this country and Eu- 
rope, to entitle it to general confidence in judicious hands. And 


while it is freely acknowledged that the remedy is not admissa- 
ble in all cases, and that in several instances it has been pro- 
ductive of ill consequences, we believe it is right to give it a 
fair trial, particularly as the discovery is of American origin, and 
has been so extensively praised abroad. It would indeed be 
strange if no bad results had followed the administration of this 
powerful agent, having been freely employed by men who make 
no pretensions to physiological or pathological knowledge, for 
the purpose of allaying the pain of a mere mechanical operation, 
the performance of which requires no such knowledge. 

As yet, but little is known of its therapeutic action. The 
last number of Banking's Abstract furnishes intelligence that it 
has been used in six cases of tetanus. In the first two the symp- 
toms were decidedly aggravated, and the patients died in parox- 
ysms of extreme suffering. In two more, though death resulted, 
the tetanic symptoms were greatly mitigated. In the other two, 
the effects of the inhalation were to subdue the pain, and to re- 
lieve the spasms, terminating in complete recovery. It has also 
been used successfully in the treatment of neuralgia, spasmodic, 
asthma, laryngismus stridulus, hooping cough, colica pictonum, 
and dysmenorrhcea. 

We have only space to remark further upon the most inter- 
esting quality possessed by this agent, to wit, its power of con- 
trolling the pains of child-birth. 

$ Reference is made by the Standing Committee to cases which 
occurred in the practice of Prof. Simpson, which terminated 
favorably under the ethereal influence. This gentleman, to 
w T hom is due the honor of first administering the remedy in ob- 
stetric cases, continues to employ it in the Royal Maternity Hos- 
pital, and we have before us his report of several cases of for- 
ceps delivery, which terminated to his entire satisfaction. We 
pass them by, however, to refer to cases narrated by Dr. Prot- 
heroe Smith, which are taken from the London Lancet, of May 
1, 1847, by the editor of the "Half Yearly Abstract.'' 

The first of these was a female, set. 40, with her first child. 
The ether vapour was administered at intervals during a period 
of four hours, with an entire relief from pain while under its in- 


fluence, though with a return of suffering, when the effect of the 
vapour had passed off. The forceps were used during a period 
of insensibility, and a living child extracted without the know- 
ledge of the mother. On recovering her senses, she expressed 
a hope that the child would soon be born, and when informed of 
the termination of her troubles, she burst into a hysterical laugh, 
exclaiming. " It is a dream — it must be a dream," &e. Both 
mother and child did well in every respect. In another instance, 
Dr. Smith states that the effect of the ether was materially to in- 
crease the strength of the uterine and abdominal contractions, 
the patient uttering the usual cries of the last stage of labour, 
but positively denying having been aware of its termination. In 
concluding his account of these cases, the Dr. acknowledges 
the truth of the following deductions of M. Dubois, viz : 

1st. That the ether prevented pains during obstetrical opera- 

2d. That it does not suspend uterine or abdominal con- 

3d. That it appears to lessen the natural resistance of the 
perineeal muscles. 

4th. That it does not appear to exert any bad influence on 
the life or health of mother or child. 

5th. That it does not retard the subsequent contraction of the 

In regard to the admissability of this agent in the complicated 
process of parturition, we can not speak from experience. We 
have heard of a few instances where it has been successfully 
used in this vicinity, but we can not detail them without more 
positive knowledge. We have also seen cases reported in 
which the uterine contractions were for a while entirely sus- 
pended under its use, but Dr. P. Smith, whose experience we 
have quoted above, refers this to the impression made upon the 
nervous system by the novelty of the means employed, as is the 
result of other strong emotions of the mind, and such as often 
follows the first appearance of the accoucheur. We believe, 
however, that the weight of testimony is greatly in favour of the 
remedy, particularly in its application to surgery, and we hope 


it may be thoroughly tried in this**country. The mode of admi- 
nistering the vapour is very much simplified. Instead of the 
numerous instruments which have been invented for the pur- 
pose, it is now generally acknowledged among physicians that 
the safest mode is to inhale through a common sponge, well 
saturated with the ether, and'applied to the mouth and nose. 
This method allows a more thorough admixture of atmospheric 
air with the ether gas, and is thought to guard against any dan- 
ger of asphyxia or other like accidents, though it may probably 
require a little more time to produce its effect, than would be 
necessary by the methods first employed. 


Proceedings of the National Medical Convention, held in New 
York, May, 1846, and in Philadelphia, May, 1847. pp. 175. 

The first meeting of the National Medical Convention in New 
York, in 1846, was an event highly conducive to the progress 
of medical science in the United States. The project of bring- 
ing together the representatives of the great medical brotherhood, 
to discourse upon subjects in which they had a common interest, 
and to devise measures for the elevation of the Science, though 
not new, was here for the first time in the history of our coun- 
try successfully carried out. The movement originated, if we 
remember rightly, in a district Medical Society in the State of 
New York, from whence it was carried up to the Medical So- 
ciety of that State, and received the sanction and co-operation 
of that body. The individual who was the most active in pro- 
moting it ,and the most persevering and industrious in arranging 
the preliminary steps, was Dr. N. S. Davis, of Binghamton, 
New York, the chairman of the committee of the State Society, 

to whom the business of calling together the delegates was en- 



trusted. To this gentleman, the profession in the United States 
owes much, for his untiring energy in effecting an object, in the 
midst of discouragement, which would have baffled the efforts of 
a man of, ordinary ability. 

It was with feelings of mingled hope and feai, that 
the ardent friends of medical reform throughout the Union, 
looked forward to the contemplated meeting in New York. 
Many of the gentlemen connected with chartered medical 
schools, it was well known, viewed it with distrust and suspicion; 
under a belief that there was a design on the part of its origina- 
tors and active supporters, to infringe upon their rights, and 
break down their influence. Others feared that it was a local 
movement, intended to advance the interests of New York, as 
the medical centre of the Union, to the disadvantage of other 
cities, who might aspire to an equal rank with her ; w 7 hile a still 
larger class, looked upon any combined effort to relieve the 
profession from growing abuses, and to maintain its honor and 
respectability, as utterly vain and hopeless. There were, how- 
ever, many who had a strong and abiding faith in the efficacy 
of a combined movement on the part of the honest and disinter- 
ested members of the profession, and who believed that the 
time had arrived, when a large number of the brightest intellects 
in our ranks, were ready to give in their adhesion to an organi- 
zation, based upon a broad and liberal basis. 

Nor were the anticipations of this class disappointed. What- 
ever of doubt or fear may have possessed their minds, it was 
dissipated at the coming together of the men who, from seventeen 
States of the Union, had left their pursuits, many of them at 
great personal sacrifices, and assembled in New Yoik, deter- 
mined to make an effort for the elevation and advancement of 
our noble profession. 

Among them were some of the most eminent physicians of 
the country, the representatives of medical societies and of col- 
leges ; the veteran and the tyro, the master and his former 
pupils, all meeting together on common ground, and animated 
alike by the feeling of consolidating the medical profession into 
a national compact, which should exercise a controlling influ- 
ence over the future progress of the science. With the ex- 



ception of a feeble attempt to arrest the course of the Convention, 
which occurred at its first session, and which was promptly and 
almost unanimously voted down ; there was a unity of purpose 
manifested amongst the delegates, which rendered the meeting 
highly pleasing and encouraging. The proceedings speak for 
themselves. They were mainly initiative and preparatory, and 
were on this account, we think, the more judicious. The 
several subjects of medical education, of medical ethics, and of 
the organization of a National Medical Association, with several 
other matters of less importance were discussed, and referred to 
appropriate committees to report to the next meeting to be held 
in Philadelphia. 

In this meeting, New Jersey, though not officially represented, 
by the action of the State Society, was so through the courtesy 
of the convention. Drs. Marsh and Lyndon A Smith, who were 
present, being invited to take seats as members. 

The success of this meeting soon diffused throughout the 
Union, a new stimulus to exertiDn in the cause of medical re- 
form, and the proposed meeting in Philadelphia, in the following 
year, was anticipated not only with favour, but with enthusiasm 
by many who were lukewarm or indifferent to the first con- 

The profession now felt that an earnest and well organized 
movement was set on foot ; and that important results must 
ensue. The grand idea of a National Medical Association 
which before had existed only in the imagination of a few en- 
thusiasts, was now developed into active being. Before this 
feeling, all local jealousies and petty rivalries melted away, and 
the great mass of the medical body felt that a new channel was 
opening for united labour in the cause of science and humanity. 
Medical Societies began to spring up in sections of the 
country, where the profession had before been scattered and 
divided in their feelings and interests ; and many of those which 
already existed, were animated with renewed vigor. 

Had the meeting in New York produced no other effect 
than to stimulate physicians throughout the country to organized 
action, it would have accomplished a grand and most desirable 


object. The medical colleges, too, felt the influence of the 
movement, and almost unanimously determined to move onward 
with the advancing tide, which threatened to overwhelm those 
who were not borne upon its bosom. 

It was soon perceived that the meeting in Philadelphia must 
exhibit an imposing array of the intelligence and moral worth of 
the profession, collected from all portions of the Union ; and the 
delegates in that city, entering with spirit into the feeling which 
pervaded the country, determined that nothing should be want- 
ing on their part, to give character and importance to its deli- 
berations, and to secure to their friends the most complete and 
elegant accommodations. Those whose privilege it was to be 
present at the Philadelphia meeting, will not soon forget the im- 
posing and tasteful appearance presented by the Hall of the 
Academy of Natural Sciences on the occasion. 

There were collected from twenty-three States of the Union, 
the representatives of the medical community, coming together 
for the promotion, not of their private interests, but for the good 
of the whole — and nobly did they manifest the spirit which ac- 
tuated them. The proceedings of the convention, as reported 
in the official document before us, cover one hundred and seven- 
ty-five pages, and evince a degree of labour and research on the 
part of the several committees highly creditable to them. 

The reports were presented on the following subjects, viz: 
On the Organization of the National Medical Association ; On 
the adoption of an elevated and uniform standard of require- 
ments for the degree of M. D.; On the Preliminary Education of 
Students of Medicine . On a Code of Medical Ethics ; On the 
propriety of the union of the business of teaching and licensing, 
&c; On the registration of Births, Marriages and Deaths, and 
on Medical Nomenclature. 

As many of our readers may not be able to procure a copy of 
the official proceedings, we shall publish such portions 
of these reports as our limited space will admit. 

Il would perhaps be premature at present, to speak of the re- 
sults likely to flow from the organization of the National Medi- 


cal Association. The signs of the times, however, even now, 
indicate the most encouraging and substantial benefits to the 
cause of Medical Science. Already two of the oldest and most 
renowned medical schools in the country — the University of 
Pennsylvania, and the College of Physicians and Surgeons 
of New York — have given in their adhesion to this new medical 
organization ; and have modified their courses of instruction in 
accordance with its recommendations, at least, so far as was im- 
mediately practicable. 

The following extract form the last annual announcement of 
the University of Pennsylvania, defines the position of that cele- 
brated school. 

" Since the last annual communication of the Faculty, an oc- 
currence has taken place of great interest to the Medical Pro- 
fession, and likely to exert no little influence over the future 
character of medical instruction in this country. A Convention 
of Physicians, representing medical bodies in almost all sections 
of the Union, assembled in Philadelphia in May last, to take into 
consideration the various interests of the profession, and to adopt 
measures calculated to sustain and elevate its character and 
usefulness. It is believed that, in relation to its numbers, and 
the standing of its individual members, the late convention has 
never been equalled by any assemblage of medical men upon 
this continent. The recommendations of such a body are enti- 
tled to the highest respect ; and, though it may not be practica- 
ble to carry them immediately into full effect, yet, as they have 
the general good only in view, it would appear to be incumbent 
on all to enter into their spirit, and by cordial efforts to prepare the 
way for the ultimate attainment of their objects. The Faculty 
recognise this obligation, and propose to act in accordance 
with it." 

The Medico-Chirurgical Faculty of Maryland, the Medical 
Societies of the States of Delaware, Ohio and Connecticut, 
have also entered heartily into the measures of reform recom- 
mended by the National Association. 

New Jersey will doubtless follow in the track, when she shall 
have an opportunity of declaring her views. No state in the 
Union has maintained a more steady and uninterrupted system 
of organization, and in none has the desire for the improvement 
and elevation of the science, been more manifest. To the next 



semi-annual meeting to be held in Burlington, will belong the 
duty of acting upon the suggestions of the Convention, and of 
receiving the report of the delegates. 

That this action will be such as the occasion calls for, and 
that the New Jersey Society will participate heartily in all prac- 
ticable measures for elevating the standard of medical education, 
and for maintaining the honor and respectability of the medical 
calling, we do not entertain a doubt. The active interest of the 
Society in the doings of the Convention, and the spirit which 
has long animated its members, furnish the surest guarantee of 
its future course. 

A Treatise on the Practice of Medicine. By George B. Wood, 
M. D., Professor of Materia Medica and Pharmacy in the 
University of Pennsylvania ; one of the Physicians of the 
Pennsylvania Hospital. In two volumes. Philadelphia; 
Grigg, Elliott & Co., 1847. 8vo., pp. 798, 840. 

The limited space allotted in our journal to the review of new 
medical books, will preclude an extended notice of this valuable 
work. In our humble judgment, it is the best treatise on the 
Practice of Medicine, which has issued from the American 
press. Containing a vast amount of practical information, com- 
bined with much lucid and philosophical reasoning upon im- 
portant questions of pathology, and opening to the mind of the 
reader a field for observation and reflection. It is not, like 
other similar treatises, a mere compilation of the opinions and 
observations of others, but comprises many facts and opinions, 
the result of the author's personal experience. The arrangement 
of the work strikes us_as peculiarly comprehensive and perspi- 


Take for example the first chapter on the " Constituent forms 
of Disease." Upon this branch of the subject, Dr. Wood re- 

" Diseases, viewed superficially, appear to be exceedingly 
numerous and diversified ; but, when subjected to analysis, they 
are found to consist of a comparatively few constituent states of 
derangement, by the combination of which, in various modes, in 
relation to number, seat, and degree, that almost infinite appa- 
rent diversity is produced. These constituent morbid states 
bear to diseases, in their ordinary forms, the same relation that 
the proximate principles of organic bodies bear to these bodies 
as found in nature; the same, for example, that sugar, starch, 
gum, &c, do to the bark or root containing them. That they 
are themselves necessarily simple or elementary is not maintained. 
Efforts have been made to reach the elements of disease ; but 
not very successfully ; because we have not yet learned the 
essential nature of the healthy actions, and cannot, therefore, 
understand their derangements. But, though we cannot push 
analysis satisfactorily to the absolute elements, we are able to 
appreciate to a great extent their less complex combinations, 
forming the proximate ingredients of those numerous associations 
of morbid states or actions usually called diseases. It may be 
admitted, as a self-evident proposition, that all diseases have 
their seat in the fluids or solids of the body, or in both." 

The subjects treated of in this chapter are, Diseases of the 
Fluids, Diseases of the Solids, Irritation, Inflammation, Depres- 
sion, Congestion, Fever, and the peculiar Morbid products, of 
Tuberculosis, Melanosis, Cysts, &c.« 

The part which these morbid conditions play in the history 
and progress of diseases is lucidly set forth, and much of the 
confusion and mystery which perplexes the mind of the student 
at his first entrance upon the study of the subject, is thereby 
avoided. We notice that Dr. Wood devotes a copious section 
of this chapter to treating of depression, as an element of disease. 

Depression of the vital powers, occurring as a primary affec- 
tion, or as the immediate result of external causes acting upon 
the nervous system, is not usually admitted to a prominent place 
in our systems of pathology, whereas it is the most serious and 
important affection in a large class of acute diseases. 

We are glad to observe, therefore, that Dr. Wood has de- 


voted so much space to the elucidation of the phenomena, ef- 
fects, &c, of this morbid condition. The manner in which de- 
pression may induce congestion, and thus mislead the practi- 
tioner into serious errors of practice, is thus explained : 

"A depression in the action of the heart, without a corresponding 
depression in that of the extreme vessels, necessarily causes the 
blood to accumulate in the large venus trunks, and in the organs 
in their immediate vicinity. The heart cannot send forth the 
blood so rapidly as it passes from the extreme arteries into the 
venous ramifications, and thence into the larger vessels, in its 
return towards the centre of the circulation. Hence arises en- 
gorgement or congestion of the venae cavse, the liver, brain, &c, 
which is a frequent attendant of diseases of debility, and is some- 
times viewed, though I believe erroneously, as the most promi- 
nent symptom, and that from which most danger is to be appre- 
hended. Such diseases have, therefore, been named congestive 
diseases; and attention has been particularly directed to the treat- 
ment of the congestive condition of the organs, with the effect of 
calling it away from the real fountain of mischief, the enfeebled 
action, namely, of the heart. It is not here pretended to be de- 
nied, that engorgement of the internal organs does occasionally 
occur as an original affection, nor that, even when it proceeds 
from the cause alluded to, it may very properly be the subject, 
of special treatment ; but it is highly important, in the latter case 
that our therapeutical efforts should be directed mainly to the 
state of the the circulation, or of the general forces, in a failure 
of which the heart may participate, and that, in attempting to 
relieve what is nothing more than an effect, we should take 
care not to aggravate the cause." 

Among the lesions which may be referred to a direct loss of 
vital power on the tissues, Dr. Wood mentions softening and 
gangrene, both effects of the two opposite conditions of inflam- 
mation and depression. 

The evidences adduced of the existence of these states with- 
out the intervention of inflammation or excessive action in the 
part affected, is to our minds perfectly clear, although we are 
aware that a certain class of physicians may be slow to admit it. 

The distinction between softening and gangrene, two condi- 
tions which may readily be confounded, is thus pointed out. 

In speaking of softening, the author remarks : 


" The result is most probably to be ascribed to a direct loss of 
vital power and action interfering with the healthy performance of 
the ordinary nutritive functions. In other words, it is a deranged 
and reduced nutrition of the part. That the softening does not 
proceed from the absolute loss of vitality, and the entrance of the 
part within the domain of chemical laws, is evinced by the ab- 
sence of fetor, which always attends putrefaction. Softening, 
therefore, differs from gangrene, though in its extreme forms, it 
may end in the death of the part. It may arise from the absence 
of those constitutent particles or molecules upon which the hard- 
ness of particular structures depends, as in the case of rachitis, in 
which the earthy salts are not deposited in due proportion, or 
from a want of due firmness in all the particles, or of due vital 
cohesion between them." 

We would gladly direct the attention of our readers to other 
portions of the work of Dr. Wood, which appear to us to present 
important views of pathology and practice, not generally regard- 
ed or taught by medical authors or teachers — but our space 

We can only express the belief that the careful reader will 
find in its pages abundant material for profitable reflection on 
the theory of medical science, while he will be introduced into 
a vast store house of facts, which have been judiciously collected 
and arranged by an author of enlarged experience, and of en- 
lightened judgment. 


Quarterly Summary of the Transactions of the College of Phy- 
sicians of Philadelphia. From November 1841, to August 
1846, inclusive. 

We have before us a work of 492 pages with the above title. 
We learn from it that the College of Physicians was chartered 
by the Legislature of Pennsylvania as long ago as 1788, and 
that among its founders were the most eminent medical men of 
that period. We notice (with others of their contemporaries) 
the names of Redman, Shippen, Kuhn, Morgan, Rush, Griffitts, 
and Wistar. In the third section of the charter, its object is de- 
clared to be " to assist and encourage said College in the prosecu- 
tion and advancement of useful knowledge for the benefit of their 
country and mankind." We have, however, no information of 
the doings of this honourable association, embracing within its 
circle the most eminent masters of the profession, for the last half 
century, except a small volume of transactions published in 1793, 
until we find in these latter days an agreement " to publish a 
bulletin of their transactions, after the example of other scientific 
bodies, who have adopted the practice with so much advantage 
to their own interests, and that of science generally." If we 
rightly understand its position in the Commonwealth where it ex- 
ists, this College occupies the highest rank ; while it has had 
conferred on it no special privileges, and has received no Legisla- 
tive endowment of authority or means, it has steadily pursued 
a dignified and honourable course, until it has earned for itself 
its present exalted standing ; being acknowledged by the pro- 
fession of Philadelphia as their regulator and arbiter in all mat- 
ters connected with their professional intercourse, and the source 
to which the Governor of the state, and other civil authorities, 
look for counsel and direction on questions of public hygiene, or 
when threatened with visitations of alarming epidemic diseases. 

Among those who are now active in perpetuating this venera- 
ble institution, we find the names of Hewson, Wood, Hodge, 
Meigs, Condie, Jackson, and many other able men. The Transac- 
tions of the College, contain the sentiments of the most acute and 

hoblyn's dictionary. 63 

and judicious practitioners of Philadelphia, upon many medical to- 
pics of great interest ; as well as the annual reports read before 
the institution, upon Medicine, Surgery, Obstetrics, Diseases of 
Children, &c. The discussions upon puerperal fever, the manage- 
ment of the placenta after delivery, upon varioloid, re- vaccination, 
and many other practical subjects, are especially valuable and 
interesting. The work as now offered must be exceedingly use- 
ful to the country practitioner, who desires to refer to the opin- 
ions and experience of some of the most eminent physicians of 
Philadelphia upon questions of practice, about which he may 
have doubts or difficulties. 

It may be had at Auner's, Marketstreet, near Ninth. 

Hoblyn's Dictionary of Terms used in Medicine and the Col- 
lateral Sciences. Revised, with numerous additions, by Br. 
Isaac Hays, of Philadelphia. 

This is a work so concise and cheap that it ought to be in the 
library of every student and practitioner of medicine. It has 
passed through two London editions, and now appears for the 
first time in this country, under the revision of the able editor 
of the American Journal of the Medical Sciences. It is not a 
mere compilation of synonyms, nor is it so voluminous as to 
oblige the reader to search thrbugh pages of hypotheses in order 
to come at the definition of a medical term. Dr. Hays has 
adapted it to the " wants of the American practitioner," and 
this fact alone is sufficient to insure for it an extensive circulation. 
It is published by Lea & Blanchard, of Philadelphia. 


A System of Surgery. By J. M. Chelius, Doctor of Medicine 
and Surgery. Public Professor of General and Opthalmic 
Surgery. Director of the Chirurgical and Opthalmic Clinic 
in the University of Heidelberg, &c, &c, &e. Translated 
from the German, by John F. South, late Professor of Sur- 
gery to the [Royal College of Surgeons of England, and one 
of the Surgeons to St. Thomas's Hospital. In three volumes. 

\ Philada., Lea & Blanchard. 1847. 

The first American edition of this valuable work has just been 
issued from the press. It is in three large octavo volumes, com- 
prising in all 2107 pages. It has been translated into seven 
languages ; has passed through six editions in Germany, and has 
long been recognized as the surgical text book of the principal 
medical schools of that country. It contains a copious analytical 
index, which adds much to its value as a book of reference for 
the practitioner, while it is made available to the student by its 
convenient and systematic arrangement. The translator's notes 
are very ample, and he exhibits much industry and research in 
his efforts to impress upon the reader the difference between the 
surgical practice of the German and English schools, and the 
grounds of his own choice between them ; while the surgical 
literature of our own country, is represented in the notes of the 
American editor, Dr. G. W. Norris, one of the Surgeons of 
Pennsylvania Hospital. The book is a pretty fair compendium 
of the different modes of treating surgical diseases in the insti- 
tutions of Germany, England, France and America, and may 
be considered as the most complete and ample work on surgery 

royle's materia medica and therapeutics. 65 

Materia Medica and Therapeutics, including Preparations of the 
Pharmacopoeias of London, Edinburgh Dublin, and of the 
United States, with many new medicines. By J. Forbes 
Royle, M. D., F. R. S., Late of the Medical Staff of the 
Bengal army. Member of the Medical and Chirurgical So- 
ciety of London ; of the Medical and Physical Society of Cal- 
cutta ; and the Royal Medical Society of Edinburg ; Prof.of 
Materia Medica and Therapeutics, King's College, London. 
Edited by Joseph Carson, M. D., Professor of Materia 
Medica in the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy ; Member of 
the American Philosophical Society, &c. &c. With ninety 
eight illustrations. Philada., Lea & Blanchard, 1847. 

The extensive opportunity for research in the domain of 
Materia Medica, which the author of the work before us has en- 
joyed by his India residence, and his connections with the 
medical staff of the Bengal army, and the scientific institutions of 
the eastern world, together with his reputation as a teacher of 
the science, is a sufficient reason for the publication of another 
work on Materia Medica. It contains 689 pages ; is concise 
and systematic in its arrangement, and may be very conveniently 
studied. A notice of some of the laws and nomenclature of 
chemistry, with an account of the physiology, classification, and 
medical properties of plants, is introduced into the work, and at 
the end of every article are arranged brief paragraphs treating 
of the action, uses, incompatibilities, and doses, so that the reader 
may see at a glance to what class of remedies any particular 
medicine belongs, &c, &c. Another convenient and useful 
arrangement, which we do not recollect to have seen before, is 
a classification in tabular form of all those remedies which may 
be used for the same therapeutical purposes, with observations 
of the author appended. The indigenous Materia Medica of the 
United States, is faithfully noticed by the American editor, which, 
together with the numerous plates, adds greatly to the value of 
the book. 





We present to our friends the first number of the New Jersey 
Medical Reporter. They were promised in the prospectus fifty- 
six pages, we have given them eighty-four, and intend to make 
the subsequent numbers no less, so that every subscriber may 
have at the end of the year a neat volume of three hundred and 
thirty-six pages for binding. It is without the anticipation of 
pecuniary reward, that we enter upon the task of publishing this 
journal; but since our connexion with the profession, we have felt 
the need of some organ by which the Society may declare its 
proceedings to the great body of physicians who have not the 
opportunity of attending its meetings, and who receive only a 
brief and imperfect abstract of them through some half dozen 
newspapers of the State. Nor should we have undertaken the 
duties of our present position, had we not been stimulated to the 
work by the favourable action of the Society at its late annual 
meeting, as set forth in the resolutions which form a part of its 
official proceedings. The medical profession of New Jersey 
maintains an organization which is believed to be unsurpassed, if 
equalled, in any other State, for its efficiency and influence. 
Established by the voluntary association of fourteen physicians 
in the year 1766 ? it has since that period been adding to its num- 
bers and strength, until it has acquired a position and reputation 
among the institutions of our State, which claim for its transac- 
tions respect and confidence. In 1816, the Society received a 
charter from the Legislature, and we proceed to give a very 
brief outline of its leading provisions. 

It authorizes the " New Jersey Medical Society" to " appoint 
five licensed physicians or surgeons," practitioners and residents 


in each or any county in this State, " to form themselves into 
District Societies, which are also constituted bodies politic and 
" corporate in law ;" these are represented by equal delegations 
in the State Society, at the annual meeting, when four censors 
are appointed for each county represented, whose duty it be- 
comes to examine applicants for a license to practise " physic and 
surgery." Said censors are required to satisfy themselves before 
proceeding to an examination, that the applicant is twenty-one 
years of age, and has studied under the " preceptorship of a regu- 
lar practising physician or surgeon, " for the term of four years, 
and that he has attended one course of medical lectures, or that 
he has studied three years and obtained a diploma from a col- 
lege; and if said applicant shall be u adjudged to be duly quali- 
fied to commence practice," he is furnished with a certificate of 
the fact from the Board of Censors, " which certificate, when 
presented to the President of the Medical Society of New Jer- 
sey, shall authorize and empower him to grant a license under 
his hand, and the seal of the Society ;" . . . u for which 
the said president shall be authorized to demand and receive 
from the person so licensed, a sum not exceeding fifteen dollars, 
to be appropriated in such manner as the members of said So- 
ciety shall order and direct." It is also made obligatory upon 
those who " undertake to teach the profession to others," to file 
a certificate>. with the Secretary of any of the Medical Societies 
of the State, setting forth the time when the pupil commenced 
his term of study, the period of filing such certificate to be con- 
sidered the beginning of his office instruction. 

This is briefly the substance of the charter under which the 
Medical Society and its subordinate branches now exist. It 
will be the principal object of the New Jersey Reporter to fur- 
nish full accounts of its proceedings, the number and names of 
licentiates admitted at different times, with such of its ancient 
records as may be placed at our disposal. In addition to the 
Transactions of the State Society, we expect to make public 
such valuable papers as may be the property of the District So- 
cieties, and to furnish a medium for original communications ; 


We also propose to lay before our subscribers in the Eclectic 
department of this journal, a general summary of medical 
science, such as may be obtained from the various kindred pe- 
riodicals of this country and Europe. What may remain ot 
space in our pages, will be occupied with Editorial and Biblio- 
graphical notices. In conclusion, we invite the co operation 
of every physician in New Jersey in our humble efforts to estab- 
lish and support this journal. For ourselves we enter upon the 
work without experience in such undertakings, and were it not 
for the aid we anticipate from our brethren, we should hesitate 
to assume the duties of an Editor : we can only promise to do 
our part with fidelity, and to them we look for co-operation and 


The next meeting of the New Jersey Medical Society is to b e 
held in this city ; the means of access are numerous and conve- 
nient, and we hope there will be a large attendance. We have 
often regretted that the semi-annual meetings are so small. In 
order to inspire the confidence and support of physicians in dif- 
ferent parts of the State, it is usual to hold these meetings in the 
several towns that are readily accessible to its members, while 
the annual meetings are (by law) held at New Brunswick. For 
this single reason, if there were none more weighty, an effort 
should be made to increase their interest. The amount of busi- 
ness which must necessarily be done at the annual meetings, 
precludes the opportunity for more deliberative proceedings ; 
and we submit it to the profession, whether these occasions 
might not be more profitably employed by discussing subjects 
which are not so intimately connected with the executive duties 
of the Society. Would it not be well to institute committees on 
the Practice of Medicine, Surgery, Obstetrics, &c. &c, the re- 
ports of which should embrace accounts of various improvements 
in these several departments ? L et these be read at the semi-an- 
nual meetings, and they could not fail to increase the usefulness of 
the Society, and advance the science for the promotion of which 
it was instituted. The approaching meeting will be one of the 


most important that has been held for many years, partly be- 
cause the present era is one of more than usual importance to 
the science of medicine, and because the National Medical 
Convention has adopted a course (which the New Jersey Medi- 
cal Society will no doubt feel bound to sustain by appropriate 
action,) with reference to procuring from the several State go- 
vernments, such legislation as will secure the registration of 
births, marriages and deaths, within their respective limits; the 
value of such a measure is ably set forth in the address of the 
Convention, which will be found in our Ecletic department. 

We may add, however, that Virginia is already moving in the 
work, and that there is good reason to believe that her example 
will be followed throughout the country. The experiment has 
been tried in Massachusetts and New York, and so far as we 
can learn, it has proved successful. In New York, each school 
district is made a registration district, and the duty of collecting 
the returns from these, rests with the school trustees, by whom 
they are transmitted to the Secretary of State, through the 
County Clerk. It is a question whether this duty ought not to 
belong to the profession ; let one physician be appointed in each 
township, by the County Court, or other competent authority, 
so as to have the work in the hands of those who are more directly 
interested in it, and who really possess more intelligence upon the 
subject than can generally be expected of others. We throw out 
these hints for consideration before the meeting arrives, when it 
will be necessary to take some action in the premises. 

The grave questions which are submitted by the Standing Com- 
mittee, for the consideration of the next meeting, will also add 
much to the interest of its deliberations. How far those licen- 
tiates who have given themselves over to systems of practice 
w T hich are at variance with sound philosophy and experience, 
should be recognized by the profession, is one of these questions. 
The other is, to what extent physicians can " humor the preju- 
dices of patients and their friends in favour of false systems of prac- 
tice without forfeiture of professional standing. We are glad 
these queries have been suggested by the committee, and we 



could not allow the opportunity to pass without inviting the at- 
tention of our readers to their consideration. 


We had fully expected to furnish our readers with this in- 
teresting document, but a letter from its author states that he 
has not been able to prepare it for publication in this number of 
the Reporter, though we have his assurances that it shall be ready 
for the next. 


We are gratified to learn that James B. Rogers, M. D. of 
Philadelphia, has been elected to the chair of Chemistry in the 
University of Pennsylvania, made vacant by the resignation of 
Professor Hare. Dr. Rogers has been for many years one of 
the most popular and able lecturers on Chemistry in the United 
States, and has been connected with several Medical Colleges. 
His appointment can not but enhance the reputation of the Uni- 


We have not been able to procure as complete a report of the 
proceedings of the State Medical Society for the present 
number of the Reporter, as we shall furnish in future. We an- 
ticipate that the existence of this Journal, and its identity with 
the profession of New Jersey, will ensure for future numbers a 
more detailed history of the transactions of the Society than has 
ever been recorded. An idea of the true character of its de- 
liberations cannot be formed from a mere abstract of the min- 
utes of the Secretary, however faithful they may be. Our pages 
are also open to such of the proceedings of the District Societies 
as may be of interest to the profession at large. 



The Committee appointed by the National Medical Convention, 
held in May, 1846, to consider the expediency, and (if expe- 
dient,) the mode of recommending and urging upon the several 
State governments the adoption of measures for a Registration 
of the Births , Marriages, and Deaths of their several popula- 
tions, respectfully 


That in their deliberations upon this vitally important subject, 
the expediency of such a recommendation has not for a moment 
admitted of a doubt. They believe the medical profession of 
the United States would unhesitatingly and unanimously approve 
the recommendation, and that such a step, by their representa- 
tives assembled in this Convention, would receive a universal 

A uniform and systematic Registration of Births, Marriages 
and Deaths, appears to be a measure somewhat difficult of ac- 
complishment in populations like ours, and must, necessarily, 
rely upon the energy and intelligence of comparatively few to 
carry its provisions into effect, yet it is of such primary impor- 
tance to the best interests of the people, as to justify our urging 
its adoption upon the several State governments, with the con- 
fident belief that when its merits are once fully understood, all 
will unite in its support. 

With regard to the second branch of the subject submitted to 
us, the mode of recommending the adoption by the several States, 
of measures for this purpose, there would seem but one course 
for the Convention to pursue, and that is, to address the State 
governments upon the subject. To this end, your Committee 
have prepared a document in the form of an address, which they 
propose, if accepted, should be signed by the officers of the Con- 
vention, printed and properly transmitted. 

As this whole subject is one which can, in its primary aspect, 
be fully appreciated by but few others than the members of the 
medical profession, it must depend, in a great measure, upon 
their efforts for its successful accomplishment, and where such 
exceedingly desirable and valuable results are attainable, your 
committee will not suffer themselves to entertain the thought 


that it will be permitted to fail, through negligence on the part 
of their professional brethren in the different sections of the coun- 

Your Committee respectfully submit the following resolutions 
for adoption by the Convention : 

Resolved, 1st. That it is expedient for this Convention to re- 
commend to, and urge upon, the various State governments, the 
adoption of measures for procuring a Registration of the Births, 
Marriages and Deaths occurring in their several populations. 

Resolved, 2d. That a Standing Committee be appointed by 
the Convention to take a general charge of the subject, and re- 
port annually to the Convention. 

Resolved, 3d, That the State Medical Societies be requested 
to assume the duty of carrying out the objects embraced in the 
first resolution; and that in those States where no organized So- 
cieties exist, the delegates therefrom in the present Convention, 
be charged with the duty for their respective States, and re- 
port to the Standing Committee. 

Resolved, 4th. That in procuring the Registration, the forms and 
nomenclature adopted should be, as nearly as possible, similar 
to those prepared for, and reported to, the Convention. 

Resolved, 5th. That the paper hereto annexed, be adopted 
as the voice of the Convention, be printed, and signed by its 
officers, and transmitted under their direction to all the State 
governments of the Union. 

All which is respectfully submitted. 

John II. Griscom, 


A. Clark, 
Chas. A. Lee, 
James Stewart. 
Philadelphia, May 5th, 1847. 

The United States National Medical Convention, assembled 
in the city of Philadelphia in May, 1847, desirous of the pro- 
motion of the true and vital interests of the people of their com- 
mon country, in all their varied locations, circumstances and 
conditions, do respectfully recommend to the governments of 
the several States of the Union, the adoption of measures for a 
General Registration of the Births, Marriages, and Deaths, which 
may occur within their respective borders. 

No effort need here be expended in elucidation of the more 
ordinary purposes for which such a Registration should be uni- 
versally adopted, such as proofs of lineage, rights of dower, and 


bequests of property. The importance of these cannot but be 
perceived on the least reflection. 

But there are reasons more profound and far reaching, results 
more important to the welfare and glory of man, obtainable by 
this measure, which not only justify, but demand its early adop- 
tion, and thorough consummation. 

There are two facts to be noticed in this connection, which 
may not be denied : 

First. Upon the circumstances connected with the three im- 
portant eras of existence, birth, marriage, and death, are depen- 
dant, to a very great extent, the physical, moral and civil con- 
dition of the human family. 

Second. A knowledge of these circumstances is necessary for 
a full comprehension of important means for the certain advance- 
ment of the population of States, in prosperity and civilization. 
To the political economist and vital statist, the laws which re 
gulate and control the lives and destinies of the people of the 
present, cannot be a subject of indifference, — to the legislator 
and statesman, ignorance of them is a bar to the full appreciation 
of their responsibility to the people of the future. The philoso- 
phy of increase of population is intimately connected with, and 
dependent upon, the proposed measure, and can be properly 
learned only from its facts and deductions. In countries longer 
settled than ours, this science has come to be one of profound 
importance to those who are called to legislate for the future as 
well as for the present. For example: The population of Eng- 
land has increased, as the census prove — and the excess of 
births over deaths leaves beyond a doubt — in a geometrical pro- 
gression for forty years, and at a rate by which, if continued, it 
will double every forty-nine years. Whether the means of sub- 
sistence keep pace with that increase, or whether the density of 
population will, ere long, be too great for its area, are important 
questions to be decided by their own statesmen. 

An increase of population has, however, nothing in it irresis- 
tible or inexorable ; it consists in nothing but an increase of 
the births over the deaths — and will be suspended if the births 
cease to maintain the same ratio to the population ; and the 
births may always be reduced rapidly, by retarding the period 
and number of the marriages, without taking into consideration 
the increase by immigration. Circumstanced as this country is 
now, with its millions of unreclaimed acres, its exhaustless re- 
sources of subsistence and wealth, in its mountains and valleys, 
in its mines, rivers and forests, it would be judicious to invite, 
even with the vast immigration to be expected, rather than dis- 


courage, an increase of a native population, by encouraging 
early marriages, provided that thereby immorality or misery in 
any form, will not advance with them. 

But before we can make any recommendations on this subject, 
or before we can even intelligently discuss it, we must have a 
knowledge of the facts as they are. By commencing a Regis- 
tration now, our successors will be furnished with the necessary 
material in time for any exigency that may arise. 

Conclusive evidence is furnished to us of the value of a well- 
digested system of Registration for the improvement of the peo- 
ple in their moral and physical condition, and in the length of 
their lives. From the facts obtained thereby, are deducible the 
rules and inferences of health, and the sources of disease and 
and premature mortality — many of which need but be known to 
be avoided. Concident with improvements in the health and 
condition of individuals, are increase of years, and advancement 
in private and public morals, and in the strength and virtue of 
the State. 

Among the first communities to establish a system of Regis- 
tration of Births, Marriages, and Deaths, was Geneva, where it 
was begun as early as 1549, and has since been continued with 
great care. The registers are there viewed as pre-appointed 
evidences of civil rights, and it appears that human life has won- 
derfully improved since they were kept. The mean duration of 
life increased more than five times from 1550 to 1833 ; with the 
increase of population, and more prolonged duration of life, 
happiness also increased; though with advanced posterity mar- 
riages became fewer and later, and thus the number of births 
was reduced, a greater number of infants born were preserved, 
and the number of adults— with whom lies the true greatness 
of the state — became larger. Towards the close of the 17th 
century, the probable duration of life was not 20 years — at the 
close of the 18th century it attained Xo 32 years — and now it 
has arrived to 45 years ; while the real productive power of the 
population has increased in a much greater proportion than the 
increase in its actual number, and, Geneva has arrived at a high 
state of civilization. 

These results, so glorious for individuals, for the community, 
and for humanity, are derived from the better knowledge and 
understanding of the science of life and health, the data for 
which are furnished by the statistics of the Registers. 

The information obtained by the Natural History surveys 
which have been made of many of the States of the Union, is 
directly interesting only to a very small number ; — while the 


facts and inferences deducible from a sanatary survey and regis- 
tration, interest and benefit, directly, the great mass of the peo- 
ple, for all are interested in their personal condition. Thus are 
produced in them more expanded views of the worth of life, and 
the necessity for its preservation ; a more thorough appre ciation 
of the importance of purity in the principal sources of its con- 
tinuance, air and food ; more attention to the comforts of dwell- 
ings and clothing, more refined sensibilities, greater energy, and 
a better regulated state of public and private morals. These 
results have been obtained in Geneva. 

In Prussia these measures are attended to in a mode deserving 
the highest commendation. Every fact relating to the health, 
lives and condition of the population, is there collected with 
great care by a central officer at Berlin, and published for the 
benefit of the people. The most beneficent results have accrued 
from the admirably arranged statistical returns made for several 
years past tin England. Of more than one large town, but of 
Liverpool especially, it was ascertained that the mortality was 
great, and the average age at death of the population low, 
whereas before, the inhabitants had boasted of their salubrity 
and longevity. The registration has, to them, truly proved the 
means of increase of health and years, after removing from their 
eyes the scales which blinded them to their own destruction. 

In many of the European states besides those mentioned, facts 
in connection with this subject are registered, and collated, in 
the most scientific and systematic manner, and, to use the lan- 
guage of a distinguished American statist, " whatever we Amer- 
icans may say to the contrary, the average longevity, in many 
places, where these measures have been in operation, appears 
greater than with us." Indeed we have no little reason 
to apprehend that unless something is done to arrest the progress 
and pressure of the causes of premature mortality in this country, 
we shall be in danger of possessing only a very young and im- 
mature population. The average age of death in many of our 
large cities, as far as returns enable it to be shown, is under 
twenty years, a fact which can only be due to the unfavorable 
physical circumstances of the people, and their ignorance of the 
true means of living and avoiding disease. 

The registers of the ancient Romans, which were pre- 
served with great care, and recorded the births, sexes, periods 
of puberty, manhood, age of death, etc., kept by order of Domi- 
tius Ulpianus, prime minister of Alexander Severus, afford us 
the means of ascertaining the mean duration of life in Rome 
nearly two thousand years ago, and comparing this with the re- 


suits of estimates made at the present day in places where simi- 
lar records are kept, we are thus enabled to establish the grati- 
fying fact of the great extension of the average period of human 
life in various cities and countries. 

Of the results obtainable by the suggested measure, ^"con- 
nection with the census returns now regularly made in each of 
the United States, not the least important and desirable are ta- 
lks exhibiting the probabilities or expectation of life. 

By this simple and elegant method, the mean duration of life, 
uncertain as it appears to be, and as it is, with reference to in- 
dividuals, can be determined with the greatest accuracy in 
nations, and in still smaller communities. This is important 
not merely in reference to the payments of life annuities, and the 
bn^iness of life insurance, whose great value is but just begin- 
ning to be felt in this country, but it is of inestimable interest, 
as determining to individuals their probabilities of living in their 
different classes, occupations, locations, and habits. " As 
it might be expected from the similarity of the human organiza- 
tion, that all classes of men would, ccderis paribus, live, on an 
average, the same number of years, it becomes important to as- 
certain whether this be the case, and if it be not, to determine 
to what extent life is shortened in unfavourable circumstances. 
The Life Table answers this purpose, and is as indispensable in 
sanitary inquiries as the barometer or thermometer, and other in- 
struments, in physical research. Upon applying it to any num- 
ber of w r ell-selected cases, the influence of any external cause, 
or combination of causes, can be analyzed ; while without its 
aid, and extended observation and calculation, w T e are liable to 
be misled at every step by vague opinions, well-concocted stones, 
or interested statements, in estimating the relative duration of 
life ; which can no more be accurately made out by conjecture, 
than the relative diameters of the sun, moon, and planets of our 

If these things are so, and of their truth there cannot remain 
the shadow of a doubt, it is plain that with this measure are en- 
twined the highest earthly interests of humanity, and it belongs 
to the legislators of the New World, the guardians and custo- 
dians of the interests and glory of the American Republic, to 
consider well ere they longer postpone the adoption of a mea- 
sure so essential thereto. " A comparison of the duration of 
successive generations in England, France, Prussia, Austria, 
Russia, America, and other States, would throw much light on 

*Fifth Annual Report of the Registrar-General in England. 


the physical condition of their respective populations, and sug- 
gest to scientific and benevolent individuals in every country, 
and to the governments, many ways of diminishing the suffer- 
ings, and meliorating the health and condition of the people ; 
for the longer life of a nation denotes more than it does in an 
individual, — a happier life — a life more exempt from sickness 
and infirmity — a life of greater energy and industry — of greater 
experience and wisdom. By these comparisons, a noble na- 
tional emulation might be excited, and rival nations would read 
of sickness diminished, deformity banished, life saved — of vic- 
tories over death and the grave, — with as much enthusiasm as 
of victories over each other's armies in the field ; and the 
triumph of one would not be the humiliation of the other, for in 
this contention none would lose territory, or honour, or blood, 
but all would gain strength." — Idem. 

A case of complete Placenta Prasvia, turning with Perforation 
of the Placenta — Death on the third day by Puerperal Fever. 
By William C. Roberts, M. D., Editor of the New York 

We little thought, when we presented to the readers of this 
Journal the review of Negrier's work upon the complication 
which forms the subject of the following history, that it would 
so soon fall to our own lotto test the value of the practice there- 
in recommended, and of our own comments upon its merits. 
But so it is. Ours is a profession teeming with emergencies ; 
for all of which, it behooves every one who undertakes to en- 
gage in the responsible duty of the obstetrical art, to be always 

Mrs. S., aged about 26, the wife of a respectable tradesman 
living in Division street, an amiable and exemplary woman, 
was, when about seven months gone in her third pregnancy, the 
subject of a small uterine haemorrhage, occurring without par- 
ticular cause. A sanguineous discharge continued for about 
three weeks afterward, and then ceased spontaneously. In a 
week afterward, while asleep, she was awakened by a discharge 
of blood of very considerable amount, which was shortly suc- 
ceeded by a third. At this time I saw her, and, the haemorrhage 
having ceased, cautioned the husband as to the possible gravity 
of the occurrence, and advised complete repose, &c, until the 
natural period of delivery should arrive. I have reason to be- 
lieve that this advice was not attended to. Having taken a dose 



of physic upon the morning of August 18th, she was, while un- 
der its operation, surprised by a gush of blood, equal, it is said, 
to two quarts. She rose from the chamber, lay down upon the 
floor, and fainted. When I reached her, she had revived, and 
the haemorrhage had ceased. She was pallid, the skin of moder- 
ate warmth, and the pulse, not weak, but remarkably quick and 
frequent. I placed her upon the bed ; examined ; found the 
nenk long and thick ; the os dilated to the size of a two shilling 
piece, not very dilatable, and above it, as far as I could reach 
in every direction, by such examination as I deemed safe, the 
placenta. I plugged the vagina very acurately with sponge and 
a silk handkerchief, retained the whole with a T bandage, ad- 
ministered a little nourishment, and enjoined perfect repose. I 
passed the night with the patient, prepared to act upon the first 
indication of need. I did not turn and deliver immediately, be- 
cause I thought the os scarcely adapted to the operation, and the 
necessity not immediately urgent. The pulse continued very 
frequent all night, and a few slight pains were felt from time to 
time. In the course of the night, I drew off the urine by the 
catheter. About daylight of the 19th, the napkin outside of the 
vulva became moistened with the flowing of the liquor amnii ; 
soon after, it became tinged with blood ; later still the patient 
became conscious of its escape, alarmed, and agitated. Blood, 
too, began to trickle in small streams down the thighs, and the 
countenance assumed an increased pallidity. The pulse main- 
tained its frequency and tension. I removed the tampons, much 
clotted with blood, and examined. The walls of the neck of 
the uterus were thinner ; the os more dilated and more dilatable. 
Two enormous clots now rolled out of the vagina, and fluid 
blood began to issue freely, in a warm stream. The agitation of 
the patient increased. I placed her as quickly as possible across 
the bed upon her back ; the blood flowed freely in the change 
of position, to her increased alarm and pallidity. I passed my 
right hand boldly through the placenta, with momentary increase 
of haemorrhage, arrived easily at the feet, and, with no more than 
the usual delay, delivered her of a child which died in my 
hands before the head was extricated. I felt its last convulsive 
struggle. Blood again flowed freely. I passed my left hand 
into the uterus, giving the child to be held by a bystander, and 
without stopping to separate the chord; stimulated the uterus to 
contraction, grasping the placenta, which with my hand was ex- 
pelled by its action. No syncope occurred. No blood of any 
consequence followed the delivery. During the hour which 
elapsed without her changing her position, lest such might oc- 
cur, I applied wet cloths, and made slight frictions. I adminis- 


tered, also, brandy and Inf. of Ergot. At the end of this time, 
she had become excessively tired of her position, and begged to 
have it changed. I prepared a cot, and carefully placed her 
upon it. This was injudicious. The patient was enfeebled by 
the motion, and the uterus relaxed. No blood, however, flowed. 
By frictions and cold, it again repeatedly imperfectly contracted, 
and entirely relaxed. After some time, having obtained a 
tolerable fair degree of hardness of the womb, and no blood 
flowing, I applied compresses and a double binder, and retired, 
enjoining perfect repose, and the administration of a little stimu- 
lus. The belly was already tympanitic, and the pulse hard, 
small, and extremely frequent. On my return, in two or three 
hours, I found her in statu quo, except that she complained of 
great soreness of the left side and abdomen, and pains like after 
pains. She had rejected by vomiting the drinks administered, 
and some coagula had escaped. I administered a large anodyne, 
and evacuated the bladder by the catheter. At a subsequent 
evening visit, I found the soreness, pains, and vomiting una- 
bated. The abdomen was excessively tympanitic. I removed 
the compresses, and, having no longer any fear of haemorrhage, 
I applied flannels wrung out of hot water to the abdomen, 
which were assiduously continued during the night. These 
were subsequently changed for thin, hot Indian mush poultices, 
which were continued until the day of dissolution. The ano- 
dyne was repeated at bed time. The patient had urinated 
naturally. On the morning of the 20th, things remained much 
the same. The abdomen was excessively tympanitic ; sore, but 
not tender to the touch. The stomach retained nothing, brandy 
disgusted her, and, after several fruitless attempts to administer 
nourishment, in various forms, ice only was recommended, as 
thirst was urgent. The skin was warm and dry; the tongue 
moist, broad, and pale ; the countenance natural ; the lochia 
sufficient, the pulse uncommonly frequent, small and tense. Pills 
of Camphor, Opium, and Calomel every two hours were ordered. 
In the evening, things remained much the same. One pill had 
been retained ; the second was supposed to have been rejected 
by vomiting, and no more had been given. The soreness was 
much complained of. I administered grs. xv. of Calomel, which 
being, in part, immediately rejected, I repeated the dose. This, 
with a large anodyne, was retained. At 3 A. M., I w r as called 
to her, in consequence of a violent exacerbation of pain, which 
was somewhat less on my arrival. The pulse was small, hard, 
and frequent. The tympanites being urgent, I threw up a large 
turpentine enema, with relief, and a bilious evacuation ; a sina- 


pism was applied to the abdomen ; after whieh the anodyne was 
repeated, and I left her more comfortable, at daylight, than she 
had yet been. Next morning, 21st, at half past nine o'clock 
A. M., she had no pain, nor did the vomiting recur till during 
the last few hours of her life. She had slept; the enema had 
operated again once or twice ; the abdomen was much softer, 
not tender to the touch, and the uterine tumor could not be felt. 
Some calcined magnesia was administered with effect during the 
day. The skin retained its warmth, the pulse its tension and 
frequency, and the countenance its natural expression ; the 
tongue was clean, pale, moist, and broad. At 10 P. M., every 
thing remained as before, but the pulse was less tense, though 
not less rapid ; the countenance was rather more livid, and 
sweat was breaking out upon the brow and upper lip, and the 
skin felt moist. I feared that nature was about to yield in the 
struggle which she had so fiercely maintained ; repeated the 
anodyne, and desired that wine whey should be given during the 
night. My fears next morning (Sunday 22d) were fully realized. 
The patient was completely hydrotic. The face was sunken and 
pale, the lips livid, the skin cold, and covered with moisture, 
the pulse feeble, and so rapid as scarcely to be counted. The 
intellect was unclouded. Brandy toddy was freely administered ; 
Ammonia and Quinine given hourly ; the patient covered with 
blankets ; bottles of hot water in numbers placed around her in 
the bed, and sinapisms applied in various parts of the person. 
In and for a little while, re-action seemed to ensue ; the skin re- 
gained some warmth, the lips became a little rosier, and a slight 
flush tinged the corpse-coloured cheek. Not wholly without 
hope, I left her for three hours, enjoining a continuance of the 
treatment. On my return, she was moribund. Her breathing 
was laborious, and constituted, she said, her only but great dis- 
tress. She said that she was " going as fast as possible," and 
that her eyes were clouded in death." Yet she readily recog- 
nized her afflicted husband at my request, and expressed her 
perfect satisfaction with my attempts to relieve her from her pre- 
dicament. In a very few moments she became insensible, heaved 
a few gasping breaths, and expired. 

Such is a true and concise account of this, to me, most pain- 
fully interesting case. The difficulty, though sufficiently com- 
mon, is not one which it often falls to the lot of the obstetrician 
in ordinary practice to meet with. 

A considerable business in this line has afforded me but few op- 
portunities of encountering it. Of the five cases which I now 
distinctly remember, one only before this proved fatal, and that 


from the obstinacy of the patient, in refusing to allow of the per- 
formance of any operation until too late. 

The case was one which seemed well adapted to the perform- 
ance of the method recently recommended by Dr. Simpson, of 
detaching the placenta from the neck of the uterus, and extract- 
ing it before the child. I took the subject into my consideration, 
and decided against it for the following reasons. I had never 
done it, and did not feel confident of successfully accomplishing 
the operation. I observed that Dr. Robt. Lee was not an advo- 
cate for its performance, and did not consider that Dr. Simpson's 
tables, " however imposing in appearance, furnished any evi- 
dence to justify any practitioner in departing from the rule 
which has been established in the treatment of cases of placental 
presentation during the last two hundred years." It took away 
the only chance from the child, which I would gladly have saved, 
and, lastly, I found that the plan w r as recommended by Dr. 
Simpson to be adopted only in cases when rupturing the mem- 
branes was insufficient, and turning either inapplicable or un- 
usually dangerous, neither of which existed. Ashwell, too, I 
found, was opposed to the practice, and I thought it safer, there- 
fore, to adhere to the old method, than to adopt a newer one, 
which seemed to be as yet of doubtful superiority, and with the 
performance of which I was practically unacquainted. I did not 
at first rupture the membranes, because I was sure I could con- 
trol the haemorrhage till the proper moment for delivery arrived. 
I did not expect the occurrence of any vigorous contractions 
after it, when so much blood had been lost, and since turning 
was inevitable, I preferred rather to perform it in a quiet and full 
uterus, than in an empty and possibly a contracting one. 

The diagnosis of the case subsequent to the delivery was ob- 
scure. The extreme rapidity of the pulse, the soreness, the 
tympanites, the pain and the vomiting were symptoms of most 
serious import. But in opposition to the idea that they depended 
on Peritonitis, were the facts, that the pulse had been rapid pre- 
vious to delivery ; the pains had, as far as could be learned, the 
character of after pains; the soreness might depend upon the 
excessive tympanites, which is of itself, in some degree at least, 
an attendant upon parturition, and not always a sign of inflamma- 
tion. There are, it is w T ell known, cases occurring after delivery, 
characterized by all the usual symptoms of Puerperal fever, 
which are not cases of inflammation, and which yield to ano- 
dynes and warm fomentations. Of this truth, the interesting 
paper of Dr. Gooch furnishes ample evidence. Again, the very 
early period at which the symptoms occurred after the delivery, 
the previous rapidity of the pulse, the absence of the usual green 


fluid ejection by vomiting, in cases of the peritoneal fever, the 
continuance of the lochia, the natural aspect of the countenance, 
the subsidence of pain and vomiting upon the third day, when 
the diminished tumidity of the abdomen allowed a more careful 
examination, which showed but little tenderness and no enlarge- 
ment of the body of the uterus ; all gave grounds for a faint hope 
that the symptoms might depend upon nervous irritation only, 
for which abundant cause had existed, or be connected in some 
way with the reaction following the excessive loss of blood; a 
hope which governed my expressed prognosis, and which the 
result of the case proved but too surely to have been wholly 
fallacious. I do not suppose that, had the case been viewed as 
one of inflammation from the beginning, the result would have 
been different. No amount of active depletion could have been 
borne in a person so enfeebled by previous haemorrhage and the 
shock of the operation : nor in the cases which I have seen of 
this terrible disease, has there been any difference in the result, 
whether they were depleted vigorously, or treated by other less 
debilitating means. The attempt made upon the second day to 
obtain the specific constitutional effects of mercury and opium, 
failed, as has been noticed, by an error on the part of her attend- 
ants, and the subsequent rapidity of the progress of the case, pre- 
cluded all hope of its accomplishment. Upon the third day, I 
entertained some faint hopes of her recovery, but this, the even- 
ing visit again served to dispel. 

What can have been the cause of the Peritonitis ? The ver- 
sion was easy, and how often is this operation performed without 
any such result ? Was it owing to the cold and friction upon 
the abdomen and uterus? These, too, are daily employed with- 
out bad consequences in cases of haemorrhage, The bandage 
was indeed firm, but removed as soon as complained of, in the 
course of a few hours. The frictions were such only as were 
necessary to secure a sufficient contraction of the uterus, al- 
though, it is true, they were long and perseveringly employed. 
I am unable to answer the query. Is it probable that the peri- 
tonitis began before the deliverp ? That such an occurrence is 
possible, we have the authority of Denman, Clarke, Collins, and 
Churchill, for asserting ; and when I reflect upon the early- 
rapidity of the pulse and speedy supervention of the symptoms, 
I confess that this is the opinion to which, in the case before us, 
I am inclined to lean. The termination of cases of placenta 
prsevia in Peritonitis is not, I suspect, very common ; for, in a 
number of cases which are at this moment under my observation, 
I do not find this termination mentioned. I do not know that 
there is prevalent among us any Puerperal Epidemic fever ; but, 



in examining the City Inspector's Report for some weeks past, 
I have noticed several deaths attributed to this cause ; and an 
obscure and fatal case of the kind was a day or two since men- 
tioned to me by one of our most cautious practitioners. I have 
delivered, since this case was attended, five patients. I ap- 
proached them with dread, but happily they have all so far done 
well. On examining the placenta in Mrs. S.'s case, I found it 
large, the chord implanted centrally, and the organ torn from 
one side of it quite through to the opposite circumference. 

The peculiar termination of puerperal fever in profuse sweats, 
with death-like coldness of the skin, lividity of the face, &c, 
has not been, I think, so far as the limited examination which I 
have just given to the subject enables me to discover, generally 
alluded to by Writers on the disease. All the cases which I have 
seen fatal, have presented this feature at their close, and I have 
seen it in no other form of fever, or peritonitis, nor in any other 
affection except the malignant cholera. It approximates closely 
to the Hydrosis of Blundell [Lectures,) who, although he 
describes "Hydrotic fever" as a disease, presenting itself under 
seven varieties, has evidently included under this head cases of 
what is strictly Puerperal Fever, (peritonitis, phlebitis, &c.,) and 
would be generally so called. Uterine hemorrhage, he thinks, 
predisposes to this form of disease. 

I hope I am correct in the belief, with which, after careful 
consideration, I console myself under the distressing circum- 
stances of this case, that no modification of the treatment pursued 
would have led me to a happier result. — N. Y. Annalist. 

Abstract of a Report on the Inhalation of Ether in Labor, by 
Jonathan Clark, M. D., of Lower Merioti, near Philadel- 
phia, taken from the Medical Examiner, of October, 1847. 

Dr. C. reports six cases of parturition, in which he adminis- 
tered the ether. Five of these were natural labors ; in four the 
patients were unconscious of the birth of the child, and declared 
that they had felt no pain ; in the fifth case the patient was 
conscious of the birth, but remarked, " although she appeared 
to suffer so much, and complained so bitterly, that she should 
not have lived through it, if it had not been for the gas." In 
all these cases the recovery was as rapid as usual, and without 
an unpleasant symptom. The pulse fell while the patients were 
under the influence of the ether, in four cases where the fact 
was observed ; in the other two it is not recorded. 

The fourth case in the series of Dr. Clark, was complicated 
with terrific puerperal convulsions. When he saw the patient 
she had had six ; her perceptive faculties were totally obliterated, 


and every contraction of the uterus ushered in a paroxysm. At 
this period but little progress had been made in the labor ; the 
os uteri was dilated to the extent of an inch and a half, and the 
membranes were entire. Her pulse was one hundred and ten 
in the minute, and sufficiently strong, in the opinion of Dr. C, 
to justify bleeding. 

Venesection, to the amount of sixteen ounces, had no favor- 
able effect ; on the contrary, the spasms increased, and the pulse 
rose to one hundred and thirty-five in the minute, and was much 
weaker ; the extremities became cold, and the surface generally 
was cool and clammy ; added to this, the contractile power of 
the uterus was so far diminished that no progress was making 
in the labor, and the os uteri was not sufficiently dilated to allow 
of the introduction of the hand for the purpose of turning. In 
this condition, and after the ninth convulsion, Dr. Clark applied 
a sponge, well moistened with ether, over the mouth and nostrils. 
The effect is thus described : " The patient soon began to rub 
her nose violently, pushing away the sponge as soon as it was 
re-applied, till she was prevented by holding her hands. Her 
countenance, in a minute or two, lost its deathly hue, and re- 
sumed a more natural appearance. In less than ten minutes, 
the whole surface became warm and much more natural. The 
pulse fell to one hundred and twenty-five ; the intervals between 
the paroxysms increased more than one half, and their duration, 
when they did recur, was much lessened. Uterine contractions 
now ceased to have their former effect of bringing on the con- 
vulsions, so that I could observe several distinct and efficient 
pains or contractions between the paroxysms. The os uteri, as 
a consequence, began to dilate, but not. yet sufficiently to admit 
of the introduction of the hand." Dr. C. continued the ether 
cautiously, taking care to remove the sponge when the patient 
became passive. This course was persisted in for three hours 
and a half, when the uterus was sufficiently dilatable to admit of 
the introduction of the hand — turning was successfully accom- 
plished, and a living child was brought away. There was no 
flooding. No vapour was given after the child was delivered. 
The mother still continued in a stupor, and the convulsions 
recurred with diminished force, at intervals of about forty-five 
minutes, for some hours, when they ceased. 

Calomel, followed by fluid extract of senna, was administered, 
until copious black and fetid evacuations were induced — after 
which the patient rapidly recovered, without an unpleasant 

The paper of Dr. Clark is one of great interest, and we regret 
that our limits will not admit of copying it entire. 






A Report of three cases of Hydrophobia, submitted to the Medical 
Society of New Jersey, at the annual meeting of 1847. By 
William Pierson, M. D. - - - - - 85 

Abstract of the Proceedings of the Semi-Annual Meeting. Reported 

by G. H. Doane, 100 

Abstract of the Proceedings of the District Medical Society for the 

county of Burlington. Reported by the Secretary, - - 102 



Epilepsy successfully treated with the Nitrate of Silver, and an 
Antispasmodic Powder, composed of Sage, Ginger and 
Mustard. By Charles D. Hendry, M. D., - 105 

A Case of Spontaneous Evolution of the Foetus. By N. W. Cole, 

M. D., of Burlington, N. J., 109 

The New Jersey Lunatic Asylum, -* HI 



Tracts on Generation. Translated from the German, by C. R. 
Gilman, M. D.. and Theodore Telkampf, M. D. ; of New 
York, 117 

The Home Book of Health and Medicine : a Popular Treatise on 
the means of avoiding and curing diseases, and of preserving 
the health and vigor of the body to the latest period ; includ- 
ing an account of the nature and properties of remedies ; the 
treatment of the diseases of women and children, and the 
management of pregnancy and parturition, ... 121 

Household Surgery, or Hints on Emergencies. By John F. Smith, 

one of the Surgeons to St. Thomas's Hospital, - 122 

Wood's Quarterly Retrospect of American and Foreign Practical 

Medicine and Surgery, ------- 123 

Summary of the Transactions of the College of Physicians of Phila- 
delphia, from June to November, 1847, inclusive, - - 124 

Materia Medica and Therapeutics. By Martyn Paine, A.M., M.D. ; 
Professor of the Institutes of Medicine and Materia Medica 
in the University of New York ; Member of the Royal Verein 
fur Heilkunde in Preussen ; of the Medical Society of Leipsic; 
of the Montreal Natural History Society, and other learned 
institutions, ---_,---- 129 


Quackery, - - - - - - - - -- -130 

Births, Marriages and Deaths, - - 131 

Chloroform, - - -132 

Biography of Physicians/ - 133 

Obituary Notices, -----..-- 136 


Code of Medical Ethics, adopted by the National Medical Con- 
vention, 137 

Chloroform, translated from the French for the New Jersey Medical 

Reporter, _-.« 150 


Case of William Freeman, the Murderer of the Van Nest Family. 

By Blanchard Fosgate, M. D., of Auburn, N. Y., - - 155 
Remarkable Case of Suicide, and Extraction of a Needle from the 

Substance of the Heart. By J. G. Graves, - 161 

New Method of procuring Insensibility under Operations, - - 162 
Professorship of Insanity, - - - - - - - -163 

On the Use of Ether and Perchloride of Formyle, or Chloroform, 

in Surgical Operations, 163 

William Nevius, 


David Bennet, 


Eli Adams, 


Samuel L. Fithian, 




Subscribers in those towns and counties where there are Agents for the 
"Reporter," are requested to make their remittances to them. We hope 
we shall be able to make an arrangement hereafter by which future 
numbers can be furnished to those living in towns free of postage through 


Alfred G. Campbell, - - Trenton. 

A. L. Dennis & Brother, Booksellers, - - Newark. 
A. C. Stryker, ».' - - New Brunswick. 





The following works have been received : 

Home Book of Health and Medicine. From the Publishers. 

Payne's Materia Medica. From the Publishers. 

Tracts on Generation, No. 1. From the Publishers. 

Medical Examiner, for December and January. 

St. Louis Medical and Surgical Journal. 

Southern Journal of Medicine and Pharmacy. 

British American Journal of Medical and Physical Sciences. 

Wood's Quarterly Retrospect of American and Foreign Practical Medi- 
cine and Surgery, Nos. 1 and 2. 

The Missouri Medical and Surgical Journal, 2 numbers. 

Quarterly Summary of the College of Physicians, from June to Novem- 
ber, 1847. 

Western Lancet. 

Buffalo Medical Journal, Nos. 6 and 7. 

Charleston Medical Journal. 

American Journal of Pharmacy. 

Introductory Lecture by Professor Gibson, University of Pennsylvania. 
" " Professor Jackson, " iC 

" " Professor Lauson, Medical College of Ohio. 

" " Professor Mutter, Jefferson Med. Col. Philada. 

" " Professor Dunglison, " " 

" " Professor Mitchell, " " 



VOL. I. FIRST MONTH, (JANUARY,) 1848. No. 2. 



By Wm. Pierson, M. D. 

Impelled by the consideration that it is the duty of the pro- 
fession, to communicate to the public, the results of all cases of 
disease, which are of rare occurrence, and of a serious nature — a 
duty which I apprehend is too often neglected — I proceed to 
redeem a pledge given to the Society, to communicate the 
history of three cases of Hydrophobia, which came under my 
observation the preceding summer. 

An apology is due for the haste with which the duty is dis- 
charged ; other engagements having intervened and encroached 
much upon the time allotted to the preparation of this essay. 

In presenting these cases, I entertain no idea of throwing any 
additional light upon the pathology, or diagnostic symptoms or 
treatment of the disease in question. They accord with the 
description of the group of symptoms generally given by medi- 
cal writers; and in their result, afford additional confirmation of 

the opinion advanced by one of the most able and common-sense 



authors which I have ever read, Dr. Thomas Watson, in his 
lectures upon the principles and practice of physic, viz : that 
there is not an authentic case on record, of a cure after the 
characteristic symptoms of the disease had been developed. I 
shall rather content myself with a notice of a few circumstances 
of a peculiar character, exhibited in the origin and progress of 
the disease as they came under my observation. I shall not at- 
tempt any argument, to settle any one of the many interesting 
and undecided questions to which this horrific malady has given 
rise ; since the morbid appearances afforded by post mortem ex- 
aminations are so very various, uncertain and unsatisfactory ; 
much less shall I venture to propose a mode of treatment, when 
I believe, verily, there is not known a solitary remedy which is 
entitled to the smallest degree of confidence, after the symptoms 
of recrudescence, as it is called, have made their appearance. 

It is a circumstance somewhat extraordinary, that a disease 
so violent, fatal, and subject to so frequent causes of its produc- 
tion, should, notwithstanding, be of such rare occurrence, that 
many practitioners never have an opportunity of witnessing it. 
Scarcely does a year elapse, that the alarm of a rabid animal in 
our midst is not given ; and yet very many, through a long term 
of practice, have escaped the painful responsibility of treating a 

During a practice of nearly thirty years, these cases afforded 
the first opportunity to me, although while a student I had seen 
one case in an adjoining village. Several medical gentlemen in 
the adjacent town and vicinity, were invited to see my patients, 
and not one of them had ever witnessed the disease. 

This general fact seems to confirm the opinion entertained by 
Dr. Watson, that more than a majority of persons bitten by a 
rabid dog escape the disease. I quote from the Doctor. " It is 
curious that different species of animals appear to be susceptible 
of Hydrophobia in different degrees. Thus, according to Mr. 
Youatt, two dogs out of three bitten, become rabid. The ma- 
jority of horses inocculated by the virus perish. Cattle have a 



better chance ; perhaps because in them, the skin is looser, and 
less easily penetrated. With sheep the bite is still less dangerous. 
Not more than one in three will be affected. The human being 
is least of all in danger. John Hunter states, that of twenty- 
one persons bitten, one alone fell a victim. Dr. Hamilton esti- 
mates the proportion to be one in twenty-five. But observes the 
Doctor : " I fear these computations are much too low." 

It is this frequent immunity from the disease, which has given 
a temporary reputation to so many vaunted remedies ; and in- 
spired many honest practitioners with a strong confidence in the 
great value, if not absolute certainty of some in the catalogue. 
I cannot refrain from making another quotation from the same 
author. " Ignorant persons, and knavish persons, have not 
failed to take advantage of this. They announce that they are 
in possession of some secret remedy, which will prevent the 
virus from operating ; they persuade the friends of those who 
die, that the remedy w r as not rightly employed, or not resorted 
to sufficiently early; and they persuade those who escape, that 
they escape by virtue of the preventive remedy. *If the plunder 
they reap from the foolish and the frightened was all, this would 
be of less consequence ; but unfortunately, the hope of security 
without undergoing a painful operation, leads many to neglect 
the only sure mode of obtaining safety." 

There is another interesting question which is worthy 
of a moment's consideration. Is hydrophobia in the human 
species, ever a spontaneous disease ? or is it always the re- 
sult of the application of an animal poison ? I cannot pre- 
tend to throw any light upon the question. The better 
opinion appears to me to be, that it is not a spontaneous 
disease. Mr. Youatt, a distinguished veterinary surgeon 
of England, who probably has had more experience and more 
extended observation in this disease than any other person, 
both in brutes and the human species, is decidedly of opinion 
that it is invariably the result of an animal poison, communicated 
through an abrasion of the integuments, or by application to a 
mucous surface. My cases prove nothing definitely ; except how 


unsuspectingly, and through how slight an abrasion the poison 
may be communicated. I will relate, however, an incident which 
goes to show how easily it may be misapprehended or confounded 
with another disease. About the time of the death of the first 
patient, an elderly gentleman from New York, of a good, honest, 
respectable appearance, called upon me with a requesfto be per- 
mitted to see the patients, having learned that there were others 
in the family who had been bitten. This old gentleman came, I 
have no doubt, on a mission of kindness, under the impression 
that he was in possession of a remedy that was certain to cure, 
even when the characteristic hydrophobic symptoms were pre- 
sent ; as he had said publicly that hybrophobia was as easy and 
as certain to be cured as a common case of fever and ague. I im- 
mediately accompanied him to the house. He informed me that 
his daughter, a young lady grown, had been violently attacked 
with the disease, and had recovered. In the course of conversa- 
tion, I asked what were the symptoms in the case of his daughter. 
" Oh ! she had spasms, and would bite and bark — and had these 
symptoms off and on for a year." 

I asked him who pronounced it a case of hydrophobia ? He 
said there were twenty or thirty physicians who called to see 
her ; some said it was hydrophobia, and others it was not. 
Upon pressing him to give me the names of these physicians, 
with some hesitancy I drew from him, among the number of 
those who affirmed, the name of Dr. Beach, the renowned 
Thomsonian ; and among those who denied, the name of Dr. 
McNevin. Concluding that the old gentleman had not presented a 
very clear case, I said, my dear sir, your daughter, in my opinion, 
had any thing else than hydrophobia. Shortly afterwards I 
saw the same case, or a very similar one, appended by way of 
certificate, in an advertisement recommending as an infallible 
remedy for hydrophobia, a nostrum, called, I think, " Williams's 
Pain Extractor." He farther informed me as a proof of the 
efficacy of his remedy, that he had, subsequently to the recovery 
of his daughter, been sent for to two or three other cases ; and 



upon inquiring the results, he said they were all dead before he 
arrived and could apply his cure. Now for his remedy. Besides 
what may be considered as a flourish, I ascertained that the chief 
dependance was in the use of the Scutellaria, a medicine, which 
I apprehend has a greater number of advocates, and has enjoyed 
a more enviable reptation in this country, than any other article 
of the materia medica. He had also some inordinate idea about 
puncturing the pustules about the tongue, as recommended by 
the Russian physician, Dr. Marochetti. This is only a single 
illustration of the crude, erroneous, and superstitious notions, 
which are so prevalent among the people at large, in regard to 
the phenomena and treatment of hydrophobia ; to say nothing 
of the utter destitution of principle, as well as of knowledge, be- 
trayed by many who for the sake of plunder vend their nos- 
trums, composed either of inert and harmless vegetables, or o* 
the more virulent poisons. 

Many opinions have been entertained, and theories advanced, 
in regard to rabies, by physicians of pre-eminent talent and 
character, to whom I certainly would pay due deference ; which 
are greatly at variance with the generally received opinions of 
the profession respecting the nature and phenomena of this dis- 
ease. Some doubt and deny the reality of hydrophobia as a dis- 
tinct disease. Others consider it as allied to, and synonymous 
with tetanus, or some of the varied forms of catalepsy or 
other nervous affections, produced through the power of the 
imagination. The cases which came under my observation, carry 
conviction to my mind, that there is an absolute reality in the 
disease, with the production of which the imagination has nothing 
to do ; for little children, who have heard and known nothing 
about hydrophobia, cannot be supposed to be under the influ- 
ence of a morbid imagination ; and that if it be a modified form 
of tetanus, then I have never entertained any correct notions of 
the phenomena of the latter disease. 

Before proceeding to notice the prominent and characteristic 
symptoms which were developed in these cases, I remark, that 
three children of one family werebitten on the same day, August 



5th, 1846, by a young puppy. One was about eleven years of 
age, the second seven, and the third a child at the breast. The 
puppy was just beginning to be playful, and to follow after the 
children. Not the most distant suspicion was entertained of a 
rabies. It followed the oldest child into the street, and as a 
carriage was passing, it flew at the wheel and was run over, 
and had one of the legs fractured. The child who claimed the 
ownership, took up his little pet into his arms, carried it into 
the house, and set himself to work to dress the fractured limb. 
In doing this the dog bit one of his fingers very slightly. In the 
course of the day, the other children, while caressing and com- 
miserating it, were also bitten ; the youngest most severely, about 
the wrist, so as to leave the marks of the teeth for several days. 
The blood flowed sparingly from the wounds, and the mother 
bound up the wrist with a piece of salted pork. Nothing was 
done for the other children ; and the mother always insisted that 
on one of them (I have forgotten which) there was not to be 
discovered a scratch or abrasion of the skin, or even the indenta- 
tion of the teeth. I notice this circumstance, to show in how 
slight a manner the poison may be communicated, and as a proof 
that it is communicable even by absorption through the skin. 
The observation of every physician will readily suggest many 
instances in which the vaccine virus has been communicated in 
an almost imperceptible manner. 

On the morning of the 9th of September following, about five 
weeks after the bite, I was called to visit the oldest child — was 
informed that he had an unusual difficulty in swallowing drinks — 
that in the morning the mother went to his bed, not suspecting 
any illness. The child complained of feeling not altogether 
well — had not slept much, and had been disturbed with frightful 
dreams. He was thirsty, and asked for a cup of warm tea, 
which the mother promised to send up as soon as breakfast was 
prepared. This she did; but the child finding difficulty in 
swallowing it, dressed himself and came down stairs. When 
I saw the patient, I was struck with the unusual and peculiar 
expression of the eye, and supposed it might be a case of sore 


throat, not suspecting the real nature of the disease. There 
■was no derangement of the respiratory organs manifested. I 
was induced to ask for a cup of water that I might test the 
difficulty. On the first attempt of the child to swallow, the 
thought flashed upon my mind that it might be a case of hydro- 
phobia. I desired the little patient to renew his attempts to 
swallow, which he very promptly did. I tried him with warm 
tea, and with milk. The results were the same. He swallowed 
warm drink with the most ease. At this moment the father 
came in and remarked, how wild he looks. I made known my 
apprehensions to the parents, and they immediately called to 
mind the circumstances before related, respecting the puppy, 
and the death of a favourite terrier dog, about the same time, 
after a few days' sickness, with what was supposed to be the 
common dog distemper. This being the first instance, which, 
during a practice of nearly thirty years, as before observed, had 
come under my care, I was illy prepared to prescribe. Resolved 
to do nothing rashly, and having no settled mode of treatment 
in my mind, I determined to administer a simple cathartic, go 
home, consult my books, and seek advice from those who had 
some experience in the disease. I mixed a dose of jalap with 
water, and gave it immediately, that I might have another 
opportunity of testing the power of deglutition. In the after- 
noon I rode to Newark, where I had an opportunity of meeting 
several of the brethren, of whom I asked advice. No one of 
them had ever treated a case, but all agreed to visit the patient 
on the following day. In the interval, nothing especial was 
prescribed. The patient obtained no sleep — complained of thirst, 
but could swallow fluids with no more ease — grew restless at 
intervals — the wild expression of the eye increased, without any 
manifestation of flightiness or derangement of mind — at times 
he was very garrulous, and invariably would say to me, at each 
successive visit, that he felt better. I expected constantly to 
witness spasms or some convulsive action in the muscular system, 
but nothing of the kind was ever perceptible up to the last 
moment. It is not my intention to follow up the history of the 


case with a minute description of all the symptoms. They 
were such, generally, as may be found in the books. I rather 
prefer to confine myself to what 1 consider the distinctive 
diagnostic symptoms of the disease, viz., the peculiar and 
spasmodic action of the throat in the attempt to swallow a fluid. 
It is, in my apprehension, impossible to convey, by descriptive 
language, a correct idea of this difficulty. It does not consist 
so much in a physical difficulty of passing the fluid down the 
oesophagus from any tenderness or soreness of the parts, for 
solid food can be swallowed without the same effect ; but in a 
shuddering, a horror, a repulsive turning from, and generally a 
convulsive spasmodic action at the root of the tongue, on the 
approach of water to the mouth. The same effect is produced 
by the sight, the mention, and the sound of water — likewise by 
any sudden current of air thrown upon the body, and especially 
upon the face of the patient, such as is produced by suddenly 
walking up to the bed-side, by blowing upon the face, or even 
by moving the bed-clothes — also by the patient washing the 
hands in water, and even by the splashing of water made by the 
washing of another in his hearing. 

Agreeably to promise, the medical gentlemen who had been 
invited, visited the patient on the second day about 12 o'clock. 
A careful examination was made, and they will testify to the 
readiness with which the little patient consented that experi- 
ments should be made upon him. Up to this period no very 
marked changes had taken place. The throat and fauces were 
examined, and a slight redness covered with a glairy mucus 
was observed. The pulse had increased in frequency from the 
commencement of the attack, and at this time was rather 
diminished in volume. All the medical gentlemen concurred in 
opinion as to the identity of the disease ; and upon a proposition 
for a prescription, one gentleman advised to give opium in 
scruple doses until sleep was induced. Now opium in twenty 
grains doses to a child eleven years old, seemed to all of us 
rather disproportioned, and I do not doubt that it was advised 
more with reference to euthanasia, and as a preferable mode to 


the older practice of smothering. It was agreed to treat the 
case with opium in three grain doses, to be repeated every two 
hours until some disposition to sleep was manifest. The medi- 
cine was immediately prepared and given. In the course of the 
afternoon the child became more talkative. He insisted upon 
being dressed, and that one of his playmates should be sent for. 
This was done, and for more than hour he was engaged in 
pleasant converse. He asked his mother to prepare the table, 
and said that he and his companion would take tea together. 
He had, in the course of the day, frequently spoken of dying, 
and of his own death ; but no allusion had ever been made, in 
his hearing, to hydrophobia or to mad-dogs. At five o'clock 
I again visited him, and gave another pill, desiring him to go to 
sleep. He made every effort, but there was no sleep. The rest- 
lessness increased. At ten in the evening I was again sent for. 
The symptoms had rapidly increased, especially the restlessness 
and garrulity. Before reaching the house I heard the plaintive 
sounds of his voice, and, on entering the room, found the bed- 
clothes stripped from the bed, and the patient plunging from one 
side to the other, the bed being so guarded by the attendants 
as to prevent him from suddenly throwing himself off. " Oh, 
Doctor," he exclaimed, " this one and that one (naming the 
several attendants) will not do any thing for me. Give me 
drink ; but I cannot swallow ; you must pour it down. They 
say I am mad, but I will not bite any of them." I said to him, 
"you shall have some drink," and immediately gave him a rag 
wet with water, desiring him to apply it to his lips, which he did. 
I offered him a piece of bread and butter. He took it with 
avidity, and swallowed without difficulty. I then handed him 
a glass of water. He made a convulsive move to take it from 
my hands, drew it towards his mouth, made an effort to drink, 
and handed back the glass without swallowing a drop, exclaim- 
ing, " I cannot drink ;" and then, in agony, cried out, " Oh, tell 
my father I must see him before I die — I will not bite him." 
At this moment I left the room, and after a few minutes, one of 
the attendants came running out, saying that he was gone. I 


hastened back, and learned that he had made a sudden leap from 
the bed, and fell dead ; a copious discharge of yellow mucus, 
occasionally tinged with red, foaming from his mouth. In all 
this time I could never discover any rigidity of any of the 
muscles, or any thing like a convulsion — and have mentioned 
the above incidents in order to convey a better idea of the 
suffering and phenomena of this most awful disease. While 
memory is with me an operative faculty I can never forget the 
terribleness of that scene. 

On the evening of September 9, about five weeks after the 
death of the first child, I was called to visit the second. He 
had manifested symptoms of indisposition through the day, such 
as loss of appetite, lassitude, and a disposition to sleep. There 
was nothing in the appearance of the child to awaken suspicion 
of hydrophobia ; but upon persuading the child to drink some 
water, which he attempted with great reluctance, the same 
peculiarity in deglutition which has already been described, was 
immediately recognized. From this time on to the fatal moment, 
the symptoms were progressively developed. He died on the 
following evening, a little more than thirty-six hours, being the 
shortest period of the three cases. In the history of this case 
I observe that there was much less violence — less restlessness, 
talkativeness, and spasmodic action of the throat — more timidity, 
and an obstinate, persevering refusal to make any attempt to 
swallow fluids of any kind. The only additional circumstance 
to which I invite attention, is the treatment which was pursued. 
Since the death of the first, this child had been put upon the 
daily and free use of a decoction of Scutellaria. Among the 
hundred cures and cases of recovery with which our ears were 
constantly assailed, we were informed, from several sources, that 
a medical gentleman of Somerset county, in this State, was in 
possession of a valuable remedy, and had treated the disease 
successfully. I said to the father, " I am in possession of no 
method of treatment, in which I have the least confidence. I 
beg you to send immediately to Somerset, and place your child 
under the care of that physician." He did so ; and the messen- 


ger returned about ten o'clock the following morning without 
the doctor, who was indisposed, but brought with him a box 
containing fifteen pills, with directions, for which a charge of 
$25 was made. The medicine w^as accordingly administered, 
with a determination on my part to follow directions implicitly, 
and accord the whole credit of cure to the gentleman of Somerset. 
Some difficulty was experienced in the first instance in getting 
the child to swallow a pill, but upon directing him to fill his 
mouth with food, some light cake, with the pill, we had very 
little trouble afterwards. The whole number but one, I think, 
were taken. This is another instance of the comparative ease 
with which solids may be swallowed in this disease, while there 
is almost an insuperable difficulty in the use of fluids. The 
patient died in the evening, without any struggle or convulsion, 
almost unobserved, and apparently in the full exercise of reason 
and consciousness. 

Without designing any unkindness, or imputatives in any di- 
rection, but with a desire to administer a caution to myself and 
brethren in the profession, I observe that claims to the discovery 
of a secret remedy for any of the diseases incident to our race, 
and especially when a high remuneration is demanded, ought to 
rest alone upon the basis of oft repeated and successful results ; 
and particularly in so heart-rending and dreadful a disease as hy- 
drophobia, hopes ought not to be excited, w T hich can never be 

Two days after this death, I was summoned to the third case, 
a coloured man, who had contracted the disease at the same time 
and place, but not from the same dog. A favorite terrier had, 
for some days previously, exhibited signs of indisposition. The 
owner supposing her to be in a heat, had kept her confined, 
daily letting her loose, when the puppy, which bit the children, 
was in playfulness with her. On the morning the children were 
bitten, this dog manifested greater sickness, and whi^e the owner 
held open the mouth, the colored man with his hand] forced 
down some medicine. The dog died, I think, in the course of 
the same day. The dog did not bite, but the disease, doubtless, 


was communicated by the virus of the saliva through some scratch 
or abrasion on the man's hand, of which, however, he was not 
at all conscious, shewing how easily and unsuspectingly we may 
become victims. The day previous to the attack, this man 
worked for me in the harvest field, and on the following morning, 
when he called for his wages, I observed nothing peculiar about 
him. He made no complaint. After receiving his money, he 
went to the tavern, and, as I was informed, drank three or four 
glasses of ardent spirits ; returning home about 11 o'clock, in a 
state of intoxication, as was supposed by some. I did not see 
him until in the evening of that day, the 15th September, at 
which time, I discovered no appearance of intoxication. Although 
the symptoms of rabies were, it must be confessed, quite equivo- 
cal, from a knowledge of the circumstances, I entertained very 
little doubt, as to the reality of the disease, and so expressed 
myself. It was with the greatest reluctance he could be per- 
suaded to| make the attempt to drink ; more I apprehend from 
an unwillingness to make himself a spectacle, (there being several 
persons present,) than from a positive difficulty of deglutition. 
In this case it was determined to give opium a thorough trial. 
Accordingly he took in pills of three grains each, from the 
evening of the 15th, to 10 o'clock the following morning, to the 
amount of sixty-four grains. At this time it was discontinued, 
there being some symptoms of drowsiness produced. Two or 
three additional pills were given subsequently. He died on the 
morning of the 17th inst., attended with a copious spewing of 
yellow mucous; a little longer duration of sickness than in either 
of the former cases. After the administration of the opium, 
there were present, to a greater or less extent, symptoms of 
narcosis, if they were not the legitimate effects of the disease, 
of which I have some doubt. Throughout his sickness he re- 
fused to drink any fluid, and whenever he did attempt, succeeded 
tolerably well by his own efforts in resisting the spasmodic ac- 
tion of the muscles of the throat ; but manifested the same kind 
of horror and repulsive shuddering, at the sight of water, and 
the sudden draft of cool air, as were exhibited by the children. 


He swallowed with ease, solid food, of which he partook freely. 
He indeed frequently called for meat. The peculiarity which I 
notice in this instance, were the symptoms of what is called re- 
crudescence, viz : a strange and indescribable sensation in the 
arm, near the elbow, which had been exposed, extending towards 
the body during the first hours of the sickness, of which he 
made mention several times ; and of the existence of which in 
the children, I never could satisfy myself. 

In all three of these cases, I could never discover any thing 
that showed the least resemblance to a fit or general convulsion. 
Mr. Youatt remarks, that in dogs, fits or epilepsy, are a sure 
indication that the disease is not rabies. 

It is proper to observe, that besides the owner of the dogs, 
there were two other persons exposed in the family, who have 
as yet exhibited no signs of the disease — the infant child before 
mentioned, and a labouring man, who says he was bitten by the 
terrier, through his boot. 

There are several interesting topics — curious, philosophical, 
and practical questions, which it was my intention to have ex- 
amined, and which I should have done, but for the many pro- 
voking interruptions which have occurred during the time which 
I had allotted to myself for the preparation of this report. 
Such, for instance, as the following : — From what animals, and 
how the infection may be communicated, admitting that the dis- 
ease in man is always the result of an animal poison ? Whether 
the saliva of a human being, labouring under the disease, is 
capable of imparting the same complaint to another human being? 
Is the virus inserted into the bitten part, immediately taken into 
the system, and thence diffused until the disease explodes ; or 
does it remain in the wound or cicatrix for a time ? This is an 
important practical question, to which I will refer again. Does 
the virus cease with the life of the animal, or may the saliva, 
after death, communicate the disease ? How long does the hazard 
last, or when may the peril be said to be fairly over ? This 
period is variously stated, from a month to several years, even 
twelve years. The instances reported of so great duration ought 


to be received with great caution and distrust ; for as Doctor 
Watson justly remarked, it is quite possible that the persons may 
have received a recent re-inoculation in some manner, of 
which they were wholly unconscious. It is stated, that of 
Lord Fitzwilliam's kennel, six dogs were bitten at the same time; 
and they became successively rabid at the following different in- 
tervals, viz: 23, 56, 67, 88, 155, and 183 days. 

Whether rabies in dogs and other brutes subject to it, is al- 
ways the result of inoculation, or whether it does not occur, in 
some instances, spontaneously ; and if so, what agencies are 
most favourable, such as extremes of temperature, kinds of diet, 
starvation, &c. 

Passing by these and other topics, I content myself with 
simply asking the question — Is there a cure for hydrophobia ? - 
With full assurance, I answer, none, when genuine hydrophobic 
symptoms are present. <{ The only physician that cures is 
Death." Is there no remedial agent, which can be administered, 
that will prevent the occurrence of the disease ? With the same 
confidence I answer in the negative. The entire materia raedica 
has been ransacked, from the inert vegetable to the most virulent 
poison — the lancet — injections into the veins — cold affusion — 
bronchotomy — electricity — galvanism — puncturing the pustules 
of Marochetti, which by the by, have scarcely ever been found 
by English practitioners, have all been tried in vain. Nor is 
this without a parallel. What agent in the wide range of 
pharmacy, administered internally, will eliminate from the system, 
or prevent the silent but certain action in due. time of the virus 
of small-pox, whether artificially inserted, or contagiously con- 
tracted ? I know of none. Is then man, bitten by a rabid 
animal, a doomed victim ? By no means. And here again I 
resort to analogy or parallelism. Insert the virus of small-pox, 
by scarification, into the arms of fifty patients. Let each be im- 
mediately followed up, and the scarification thoroughly washed 
and cleansed with soap-suds, and I venture to assert that most 
will escape the disease. Instead of this, apply lunar caustic to 
each inoculation, and, I think, we shall be certain of a greater 


immunity. Excise with the knife, or snip out with the scissors, 
fully, each scarification, and I venture, that not a single inocula- 
tion will take. Such, I apprehend, will be the results in an equal 
number of patients inoculated with the poison of hydrophobia ; 
and the potency of the remedy will be in the order above stated. 
Thorough excision with the knife, and that immediately, would 
remove all anxiety from my mind, were I the unfortunate 

Mr. Youatt, who seems to have had a most extensive ex- 
perience in the treatment of this disease, says he has been bitteu 
seven times, and has applied the lunar caustic to more than four 
hundred persons, bitten by dogs, of whose disease there could 
be no question, and that he has not lost a case. A friend once 
informed me, that his practice was, to burn gunpowder in the 

If the opinion entertained by some be correct, that the virus 
remains dormant until symptoms ofrecrudescent pains appear, — 
and in support of which, the varied duration of the period of 
incubation, and the fact that inflammation along the course of 
the lymphatic vessels, and glands from the bitten parUo the body 
is not uniformly exhibited, afford no small amount of evidence, — 
then it becomes an important practical question, whether ex- 
cision of the bitten part, during any period of the incubation, 
does not afford good ground to hope for safety and protection 
from this awful and death-dealing malady. 

Such a practice has the authority of Doctor Watson and other 
eminent physicians ; and I think will not be overlooked by any 
one who justly estimates the honour of the profession, the suc- 
cess of his own reputation, and the high claims of suffering 




Reported by G. H. Doane. 

A semi-annual meeting of the New Jersey Medical Society 
was held at the City Hotel, Burlington, on Tuesday the 9th of 
November, 1847. 

Samuel H. Pennington, 1st Vice President, in the Chair. 

The following delegates appeared. 

S. H. Pennington, 1st Vice President; W. Peirson, Re- 
cording Secretary ; J. S. English, Treasurer. 

J. B. Munn ; of Morris. 

Charles D. Hendry, Richard M. Cooper, of Camden. 

Isaac S, Haines, Joseph Parrish, Samuel Woolston and 
Zach. Read, of Burlington. 

John R. Sickler, Thomas J. Saunders, of Gloucester. 

C. Hannah, Dr. Reeve, of Salem. 

Fellows present, — C. Hannah, J. B. Munn, F. S. Schenck, 
J. W. Craig, B. H. Stratton, Zach. Read. 

Physicians present who were not delegates, — N. W. Cole, J. 
B. Warriner, Alex. Elwell, of Burlington; Dr. Woodruff, of 
Camden, Dr. Potter, of Cumberland. 

All medical gentlemen, other than delegates, were invited to 
take seats. S. W. Pennington addressed the Society on the 
Pathology of Rheumatism, detailing the history of an interesting 
case which terminated fatally, with the autopsic appearances. 

The questions which were referred by the Standing Committee, 
in their last report to this meeting, were than taken up and con- 
sidered. These questions are, whether members of the Society 
shall " maintain professional intercourse " with those "licensed 
practitioners " who have abandoned the system which they 
were licensed to practice ; and how far " its members may 
humor the prejudices of patients and their friends, in fa- 
vour of false systems of practice," &c. Considerable discussion 


arose pending this question, and it was finally dismissed by sub- 
mitting it to a committee consisting of Jos. Parrish, J. B. Munn, 
and F. S. Schenck, with instructions to report thereon at the 
next meeting. 

Jos. Fithian, on behalf of the District Society of Gloucester 
County, submitted to this meeting, the following preamble and 
resolutions, as part of the business of the District Medical So- 
ciety of Gloucester County, to wit : 

" Whereas the Medical Society of New Jersey, did agree 
upon and establish on the 11th of May, 1831, a table of fees and 
rates of charging of sundry articles and services in medicine and 
surgery, for the government of its members ; and also for the 
protection of the public from excessive charges, by any member 
of the profession ; and while we have no complaint to make of 
a majority of our patrons, who do not refuse to pay for charges 
made within the regulations above referred to, yet there are un- 
principled persons who refuse to make compensation for services 
rendered, although abundantly able, if they possessed the dis- 
position to do so. And whereas, the maintenance of the honour 
and respectability of the profession at large, and justice to our- 
selves, individually, require that measures be taken to protect 
ourselves and the profession from such persons, therefore 

Resolved, 1. That whenever any such person refuses to pay, 
or resists the collection of his account, his name may be handed 
to the Secretary, who is hereby required to enter it in a book 
to be kept for that purpose, to be called the black book, a list 
of which names shall be furnished to each member of the So- 
ciety at their stated meetings, or oftener if required. 

2. That we pledge ourselves to each other, that we will re- 
fuse to attend the call of any such person, unless he shall pay in 
advance, at the time of the call, and also promise to pay the bill 
of the physician reporting his delinquency. 

These resolutions elicited considerable remark, and were ap- 
proved by the members. 

Resolved, That it is inconsistent with the duty of members oi 
Medical Societies, to administer any medicine exclusively em- 



ployed by practitioners who adopt erroneous systems of practice, 
or systems not recognized by the Medical Society of New Jersey, 
in their examinations of candidates. 

The recommendations of the National Medical Convention, 
to take measures to secure the registration of births, marriages 
and deaths, being now taken up, it was moved to appoint a 
Committee to correspond with the Committee of the Conven- 
tion, on that subject, and to be in attendance at Trenton during 
the session of the ensuing Legislature, with a view of forwarding 
the measure. 

The committee consist of Samuel Woolston, J. B. Munn, and 
F. S. Schenck. 

Dr. Fithian offered the following resolution, which was 
unanimously adopted. [ Dr. F. stating that the proposition which 
it contains, is being carried out by the physicians of his 

i .Resolved, That it be recommended to the medical profession 
to use their personal endeavours to have the different churches 
instruct their sexton's and other authorities, to r^ortthe number 
of funerals in their several burying grounds, with the age and 
disease of which the deceased respectively died, as far as can be 



Reported by the Secretary. 

Semi-Annual meeting atMedford, Nov. 20th, 1847. 

Dr. Samuel Woolston in the chair. Minutes of last meeting 
read and'approved. Dr. I. S. Haines and Joseph Parrish, re- 
ported that they had attended the annual meeting of the State 


Society, and that a dividend of $10, was awarded for each dis- 
trict society represented. The amount was paid over to the 

Drs. S. Woolston and Zach. Read, were appointed to repre- 
sent this Society at the next meeting of the National Medical 
Association, to be held in Baltimore. Dr. A. E. Budd was 
appointed to read the annual address. 

The semi-annual report /was read by Dr. Joseph Parrish, in 
which was detailed the history of several cases of pseudo-mem- 
branous, or laryngeal croup, which had recently occurred to 
him ; the alkaline and mercurial treatment were severally tried 
with their usual adjuvants, with a result favourable to the 
mercurial plan. The cases seen during the earlier stage, offered 
a fair opportunity for the full effect of the alkaline remedies. 
They were given immediately, and persevered in thoroughly, 
not however without the aid of mercurial purgation, and oc- 
casional emetics, with leeches to the throat, and cataplasms to 
the chest and feet. Three of them terminated fatally. Other 
cases were mentioned where the treatment consisted in the first 
place of free catharsis by means of calomel, and subsequently 
by its administration in divided doses, according to the age of 
the patient, with powders of ipecac, and tartar emetic, several 
times a day, to promote emesis, a solution of nitrate of silver, 
being applied to the throat frequently by means of a camel's 
hair pencil, or a probang. This mode of treatment proved 
successful in several instances. Bleeding from the arm w r as not 
resorted to, because there was no evidence whatever of arterial 
excitement in the commencement of the disease ; the pulse being 
regular, the skin of a natural temperature, the only indication 
of disease consisting in a slight whispering voice, sometimes 
with but little cough, and that of a peculiar, husky sound, 
altogether unlike the sonorous cough of inflammatory or spasmodic 
croup. The insidious manner of approach, the earliest symp- 
toms of the disease not being such as to excite the alarm of 
parents, the child being playful, even in some cases till within a 
few hours of death, all render the disease as distinctly different 


from the ordinary form of croup. The reporter had seen several 
cases within a few months, all in the same vicinity, and two of 
them in the same family. He presented for the inspection of 
the members, a specimen showing the entire membrane occupy- 
ing the whole internal surface of the larynx and trachea, taken 
from one of the children, whose case was reported in detail. He 
recollected having seen the membrane discharged entire, in a 
case which recently occurred to his late preceptor, Dr. Cole, by 
whose kindness he was invited to visit the patient. This mem- 
brane resembled a piece of boiled maccaroni ; was about the size 
of a goose-quill, and perfectly tubular. The patient had been 
worn out by the force of the disease, for several days before 
Dr. Cole saw it, having been under the homoeopathic treatment. 
Shortly before death the membrane was evacuated. It was as- 
sumed that the disease originated in a peculiar condition of the 
blood, the tendency of which is to form adventitious membrane, 
and that the indication in the treatment is first to alter that con- 
dition of the vital fluid, by the free administration of calomel ; 
not in doses to keep up frequent catharsis, but in such quantities 
as may readily enter the circulation, and to cleanse the pharynx 
of its secretions, by the use of emetics and gargles of a solution 
of nitrate of silver, employing local or general depletion, if 
indicated by the symptoms, &c. 

Dr. Geo. Haines, of Medford, and Dr. Alexander El well, of 
Vincentown, w r ere admitted as licentiates, by the censors. 

Adjourned to meet at Mount Holly, at the usual time in 





By Charles D. Hendry, M. D. 

Of all the diseases to which the human frame is subject, no 
one is more alarming in its symptoms, or more fatal in its effects, 
than epilepsy. It is a disease of the nervous system, located in 
the brain, and exclusively chronic in its character, attacking 
persons of all ages, from childhood to old age, without regard 
to constitution. Often times its victims are among the most 
robust, but more frequently the emaciated. So far as my ex- 
perience will warrant an opinion, those with impaired constitu- 
tions, are more liable to suffer from this malady. Viewing 
epilepsy as a chronic disease from its commencement, and having 
been baffled in the treatment which had been confined to the 
paroxysms, for which antiphlogistic remedies had invariably 
been resorted to, I resolved upon an opposite course, and have 
employed tonics and stimulants. For several years I attended 
Judge R., of Burlington county, for epilepsy, aged fifty years ; 
of a plethoric habit, and sanguine temperament. The treatment 
in his case had been confined to the paroxysms, for which 
copious depletion with the lancet had invariably been resorted 
to without benefit, the attacks returning more frequently and 
severely. Having lost all confidence in the course adopted, I 
resolved upon the opposite, — a stimulating treatment. The 
premonitory symptoms, such as stupor and difficult deglutition, 
were always prominent some hours before the disease would be 
fully developed. In this stage I advised the free use of brandy 
in warm water, to be given as frequently as circumstances re- 


quired. The disposition to epilepsy soon disappeared, and he 
lived several years, and enjoyed uninterrupted health. The 
principal cause of epilepsy, I consider not to depend upon con- 
gestion, — from a predisposition of blood to the brain, but to 
debility, giving rise to paralysis, and as corroborative evidence 
of this theory, I will cite several prominent cases, of some twenty, 
treated successfully, without an exception, by a tonic treatment. 
All of them had been subjected to an antiphlogistic course, 
without relief. A great deal depends upon the perseverance of 
the physician, as there is always a strong tendency in the disease 
to return. By pursuing this course, I am confident a large ma- 
jority of the epileptics of the country will be banished from the 
incurable lists of physicians, and relieve them of the unpleasant 
task of so often pronouncing them beyond the reach of pro- 
fessional aid. The great mistake in the treatment of epilepsy, 
has in a measure been owing to its having been confined to the 
paroxysms, when in reality the intermission is the time for 
action, bracing the system with the most active tonics and 
antispasmodics, and in this way producing a radical change in 
the nervous system. As I have no disposition to occupy the 
columns of the journal unnecessarily, I will be content by citing 
five prominent cases, which I trust will suffice to give counte- 
nance to the treatment proposed. 

Case 1. — Mr. J. J. of Gloucester county, by occupation a 
farmer, aged fifty years, of full habit, general health impaired. 
He had been subject to epilepsy for three years, the attacks 
recurring every six weeks, and varying from one to three con- 
vulsions. His family physician at sundry times resorted to 
copious depletion, both general and local, cathartics, emetics, 
revellants, &c, but all to no purpose, and finally abandoned his 
case as incurable. In the month of March, 1845, 1 commenced 
the treatment of his case with one-fourth grain doses of the 
nitrate of silver, in form of pill, three times a day, in a tea- 
spoonful of the antispasmodic powder, mixed in an equal quantity 
of molasses. This course was continued three months, at which 


time his disease had assumed a more favourable aspect. Half 
grain doses of the pill was now advised, and a gradual increase 
of the dose of the powder ; at the expiration of six months the 
disease left him, and now two years have elapsed and no return 
of the disease. It was not thought advisable to make any 
change in his diet, except to abstain from the free use of coffee. 

Case 2. — Mr. A. D. of Camden county, aged 35 years, with 
constitution much impaired, and emaciated, complexion sallow, 
and imbecile in mind ; he had been afflicted with epilepsy from 
childhood, and was subjected to medical treatment in early life 
whilst he resided in Burlington county, but without benefit. For 
a number of years his case had been considered hopeless, the 
paroxsyms would return every six weeks and continue irregularly 
for several days. During this period he would have from ten to 
fifty convulsions, the attack resulting in a state of decided 
mania. In December, 1844, his friends made application to me 
respecting his case. The treatment advised was so similar to the 
preceding case that I will not recapitulate it,' but will merely add 
that in less than three months I had every assurance that the 
treatment recommended would ultimately effect a cure, and in 
less than nine months I had the satisfaction to see him relieved 
of this formidable disease, his constitution reacted, his general 
health was restored, and I am happy to state there is no appear- 
ance of imbecility of mind. Several years have now tran- 
spired and his health continues good. 

Case 3. — The subject of this case was a daughter of Mr. C, 
of Camden county, aged 3 years. She had been afflicted with 
epilepsy for six months, constitution impaired; during this period 
she had more than one hundred distinct epileptic convulsions ; 
primary cause supposed to be gastric irritation I had charge 
of this case from the commencement, and resorted to topical 
blood-letting, with leeches, cathartics, emetics, revellants, and a 
variety of antispasmodics, but all without the desired effect. 
After six months' treatment the parents became discouraged, and 


removed the child to an adjacent county for the purpose of ob- 
taining the advice of several practitioners, who agreed that the 
patient was idiotic, and any medical treatment would prove of no 
advantage. On their return I was again called upon to pre- 
scribe in her case, and recommended the pill and powder in the 
accustomed dose without regard to age, and in less than three 
months the disease left her, and she is now one of the most in- 
telligent and interesting children in the village in which she 
resides. Eighteen months have elapsed and no return of the 

Case 4. — Mrs. W. of Camden county, aged 40 years, of 
plethoric habit and in the enjoyment of good health, and now 
in the fourth month of utero gestation. When called to her she 
informed me she was the mother of four children, and during 
each term, and about the fifth month, she would be assailed with 
convulsions, which returned regularly every two weeks during 
the remainder of the term. She had been subjected to medi- 
cal treatment in Philadelphia, which was confined to copious 
depletion with the lancet, counter-irritants, and enemas, but all 
to no purpose, the convulsions continuing at intervals during 
each term of pregnancy. About the fifth month I was sum- 
moned to visit her, and found her struggling with a frightful 
convulsion. I was entreated by her friends to resort to vene- 
section, but as it had on all previous occasions proved of no 
avail, I objected, and recommended counter-irritants and enemas. 
After the paroxysm I advised the pill and powder in the ordinary 
dose. She had not a return of the disease, but passed through 
the term without inconvenience. This is the first case, under 
such circumstances, in which I have had an opportunity of 
testing the utility of this form of treatment. 

Case 5. — In October, 1846, I was requested to visit the 
daughter of Mr. J. S. T., of Burlington county, aged five years; 
emaciated and afflicted with chorea and epilepsy ; the former 
disease evidently the existing cause of the latter. The history 


of her case I will briefly state. When about two years old she 
was assailed with epilepsy, which returned every night for some 
two years, with but one or two intermissions of four weeks, 
and on one occasion, a short time previous to my seeing her, 
she remained in a state of stupor for nine days, the result of an 
attack of epilepsy. Her parents informed me she had been 
under treatment for a long time, but w r as finally abandoned as 
incurable. When I first visited her she was restless beyond 
description, requiring some one to watch her constantly, and I 
supposed her intellect to be completely destroyed, and prescribed 
for her with great reluctance ; however, in the course of four 
weeks T completely removed the chorea with equal parts of the 
bi tart potass and flor sulph, in tea-spoonful doses, mixed in 
molasses, three times a day. I then ordered the pill and powder 
in the accustomed doses, and in six months was assured by her 
parents that she was perfectly well. The last attack was in 
April, 1847. 

By N. W. Cole, M. D. ; of Burlington, N. J. 

On the evening of 10th of Oct., I received a message from 
my friend Dr. Haines, to visit with him a female in labour of 
her eleventh child, to whom he had been called in the afternoon, 
and to bring with me my instruments. The Doctor informed 
me that upon his arrival he found one child born, and that 
another was presenting, with the shoulder and its right arm 
protruding. He stated also that he had made several unsuccess- 
ful attempts to turn. Upon examination I found everything as 
above stated. The labour pains had entirely ceased, from the 
time of the birth of the first child. Its waters evacuated, and 



the uterus was closely and rigidly contracted around its body, 
so much so that after repeated efforts, I was obliged to abandon 
all idea of turning without using more force than would be 

While preparing the necessary instruments for taking the 
child away, (it was dead beyond all doubt — there being no pulsa- 
tion from the time of my arrival) the mother's pains returned; 
and Dr. Haines, who was sitting with her, observed the child to 
be lower down. I immediately made an examination, and found 
that some change was taking place. Its body seemed to descend, 
and I distinctly felt its shoulder ascend. In less than five mi- 
nutes from the return of the pains, it had made a complete somer- 
set. The feet and breech came down, and the head followed 
without any difficulty. It was healthy, and of the average 

Note. We regret that Dr. Cole has not had time to give us a statement 
of his views upon the rationale of the process which he has described. 
The case is certainly an interesting one, and we take the liberty of 
mentioning one or two additional facts which we have obtained from 
conversation with Drs. Cole and Haines. Upon examination, the head 
of the child was distinctly felt lying on the left side of the pelvic cavity. 
The jaw and the ear were readily distinguished, and the hand was so 
far protruded that there could be no mistake as to the character of the 
presentation. The breech could not have presented at the os-uteri, 
and the hand in the vagina, by reason of this extremity lying upon the 
side of the body, as was the fact in a case reported by Dr. Gooch, or 
the head and face could not have been so distinctly felt, or the hand 
found protruding outside the vagina. 

The case first reported by Dr. Denman, we believe in 1772, was, as 
we apprehend, similar to that reported by Dr. Cole, and the term 
"spontaneous evolution" was adopted by that distinguished author. 
Dr. Douglass, however, in 1811, proposed the term "spontaneous ex- 
pulsion," as more expressive. Supposing that Dr. Denman's explana- 
tion was incorrect, and that the thorax became partially doubled upon 
itself, and the foetus expelled while the head remained in its original 
position, as it were a fixed point; the side of the thorax and abdomen 
passing rapidly over the perinasum, leaving the head and other arm to 
complete the last stage of labour. But Dr. Cole informs us, that as the 
pains increased, u the body seemed to descend, and I distinctly felt its 
shoulder ascend." This ascent of the shoulder continued until the arm 


was carried completely up into the uterus, and the breech and feet 
spontaneously took its place. Here then was a clear and distinct evolu- 
tion; — to use the graphic term of Dr.*C, a (: complete somerset 5" and 
after an obstetric practice of half a century, this case has presented to 
him the first exemplification of Dr. Denman's theory. We gladly give 
the article a place in our journal, and hope to hear from its author 
a sain. — Ed. 


We believe the attention of the people of this State, was first 
directed to the claims of our insane population, upon our sympa- 
thy and regard, and to the subject of the erection of an asylum 
for their accommodation, by an address read before the Medical 
Society of New Jersey in 1837, by Dr. Lyndon A. Smith, of 
Newark, on the occasion of his taking the chair as President 
of the Society. 

The interest of the medical community being enlisted by this 
appeal, it soon spread throughout their several neighbourhoods, 
and reached the legislature in 1839, at which time a joint resolu- 
tion was passed by the council and general assembly, authorizing 
the governor to appoint commissioners, u to ascertain as ac- 
curately as practicable, the number, age, sex and condition of 
lunatics in this state :" and if on such investigation being made, 
a lunatic asylum should be thought the " best remedy " for 
their relief, " then to ascertain the necessary cost of the es- 
tablishment of such an institution, the locality for the same, 
&c," and an appropriation of five hundred dollars was made to 
defray the expenses of such investigation. Under this authority, 
Governor Pennington appointed as commissioners, Doctors 
Lyndon A. Smith, of Newark, Lewis Condict, of Morristown, 
A. F. Taylor, of New Brunswick, C. G. McChesney, of Trenton, 


and L. Q. C. Elmer, Esq., of Cumberland county. The 
governor seems to have been impressed with the propriety of 
giving a strong medical character to this commission, as is 
shown by his selecting four out of the five appointed, from the 
medical profession. 

Soon after their appointment, the commissioners met at the 
office of Dr. Smith, in Newark, appointed the venerable Dr. 
Condict their chairman, and proceeded to apportion among 
themselves different spheres of labour. In addition to visiting 
the several counties of the state, and making diligent personal 
inquiries upon the subject committed to them, the aid of intelli- 
gent and interested citizens in different parts was secured ; and 
Drs. Condict and Smith, on behalf of their colleagues, visited 
the McLean Asylum at Charlestown, Mass., the State Lunatic 
Hospital at Worcester, and the General Hospital, and State 
Penitentiary at Boston, in order to obtain information as to the 
order and government of these institutions, and of the influence 
of the treatment employed upon the insane. The result of these 
inquiries was embodied in a report of forty-seven octavo pages, 
by which it appears that the number of lunatics ascertained to 
be in New Jersey, was, males, 252, females, 163, leaving out of 
the computation those who were not actually known to be in- 
sane, thus making the ratio of insane persons among us to ex- 
ceed that of New 7 England, where it is estimated at one in every 
thousand. Several instances of cruelty which occurred under 
the observation of the commissioners, were also stated in the 
report, with valuable extracts from some of Dr. Woodward's 
reports to the managers of the State Lunatic Hospital of 
Mass., all of which was presented to the legislature at the ses- 
sion of 1840—41, and ordered to be printed. 

The Governor's message of the following year, recommended 
the subject to the attention of the legislature, and a joint com- 
mittee w r as appointed to consider and report upon so much of 
the message as related thereto. During the session, the com- 
mittee reported favourable to an appropriation for the erection 
of an insane asylum, and in order to enlist more fully the active 


sympathy of the legislature, several cases of extreme hardship 
and cruelty were reported. Among these was that of a highly 
respectable citizen of the state, who had been himself, for many 
years, a member of the legislature; was afterwards clerk of 
the county where he resided, and had since occupied the station 
of a judge. This man, who had thus partaken of the confi- 
dence and esteem of his fellow-citizens, and had been entrusted 
with offices of honour and responsibility, was borne down 
under the weight of pecuniary embarrassments, and found him- 
self surrounded in the evening of life, with difficulties from 
which he could not extricate himself. In addition to this he was 
overwhelmed with grief, at the loss of an only son ; his mind 
yielded to the pressure, and he became at last a hopeless 
maniac. Under these circumstances he was confined within the 
walls of the county jail, and subsequently removed to the county 
alms-house, there to await the coming of the messenger who 


would call him away from the toils and pains of life. The 
commissioners close their report thus: 

Deeply impressed with the conviction that the time has ar- 
rived when New Jersey should act promptly upon this subject ; 
and desirous that she should not be behind her sister states in 
their philanthropic exertions, your committee unanimously sub- 
mit, for the consideration of the legislature, the following re- 
solutions, viz: — 

Ptesolved, 1st. That the confinement of insane persons in jails, 
with criminals, is subversive of all distinction between calamity 
and guilt, and punishes the misfortune which it is the duty of 
society to relieve. 

2d. That as experience has shown that recent insanity, in 
most cases, is readily cured, it is highly expedient that the state 
should provide a suitable institution for the comfort and relief of 
the insane poor, and to remove them from prisons and poor 

3d. That an asylum be erected at the expense of the state, at 
some proper point, to be selected by commissioners, with the 
approbation of the Governor, upon such plan as they shall deem 
best adapted for the purpose of such an institution. 

4th. That the committee be instructed to report a bill provi- 
ding for the objects expressed in the above resolutions." 



In compliance with these resolutions, the legislature appointed 
a committee to select a site for an asylum. These gentlemen 
visited different localities in the state, and we believe, selected a 
spot which was deemed suitable, and so reported to the legisla- 
ture. From some cause the proceedings became arrested at this 
juncture, and the legislature adjourned without passing any act 
upon the subject ; still the attention of the people had become 
awakened, their sympathies had been aroused, and they were 
willing at the proper time, to carry out the recommendations of 
the committee. In the year 1845, the subject was again brought 
before the legislature, by a memorial from D. L. Dix, a New 
England lady, well known in our country for her active be- 
nevolence in this department of charity. To this memorial was 
attached a tabular statement, compiled by the commissioners of 
1839. The effect of this movement was to re-kindle the energy 
which had previously been awakened, and a joint committee was 
again raised in the legislature, in which the medical profession 
was, as on former occasions, ably represented. This committee 
made a brief but well written report, in which they assert the 
necessity of prompt action. Their conclusions prevailed in the 
legislature, and a new commission was appointed at the session 
of 1846-47, to select a site for an asylum. 

A most beautiful and eligible locality was chosen, about two 
miles from Trenton, on the Delaware river, overlooking the city 
and the river, and in every respect presenting the natural ad- 
vantages which such an institution requires. 

At the opening of the next session, the attention of the 
legislature was called to the subject by Gov. Stratton, further 
appropriations made in aid of the work, and a bill was passed 
organizing the asylum. As the building is now nearly ready 
for the reception of patients, we have thought it within our 
province to give this account of the history of the movement, 
and to point out the active interest taken by the medical pro- 
fession of New Jersey therein. 

At the last session the whole plan was completed, and a bill 
passed providing for the appointment often managers, and vest- 



ing the power of filling vacancies in the Supreme Court of the 
State. This board was authorized to elect a medical superin- 
tendent, a treasurer, steward and matron. The salaries of the 
officers to be approved by the Governor. Patients are to be 
admitted to the asylum in due proportion from each county, by 
the Court or any Judge of the Common Pleas ; and it is made 
the duty of overseers of the poor, to make application to any 
Judge, in the case of an insane pauper, for authority to commit 
such pauper to the asylum ; it is also made the duty of said 
judge to summon at least two respectable physicians, and to 
investigate the case ; " and if the person examined is found to 
be a suitable patient for the asylum, he is to be removed and 
retained there at the expense of the county to which he belongs." 
No patient is to be admitted for a shorter period than six 
months ; and before any town or county officer sends a patient to 
the asylum, he is to see that said patient is " in a state of perfect 
bodily cleanliness," and provided with suitable changes of rai- 
ment. Neither can a patient be discharged from the asylum 
without suitable clothing, and without being provided with a 
sum of money not exceeding ten dollars, to defray his or her ex- 
penses in reaching home. The managers are to receive no com- 
pensation, their travelling expenses only being allowed them. 
All purchases for the asylum are to be made for cash, and the 
managers are bound to make all needful rules to enforce this 
provision. At a meeting of the managers, held in the spring of 
1847, a number of candidates appeared for the office of super- 
intendent. Several of them were members of the Medical 
Society of New Jersey, who had taken a deep interest in the 
subject from its commencement. There were two other gentle- 
men, one from the state of Pennsylvania, and the other from 
New York, both of whom had been residents for some years, in 
similar institutions in their respective states. The choice fell 
upon Dr. Buttolph, of Utica, New York, who had been for 
some years an assistant of the well known Dr. Brigham, at the 
insane asylum at Utica, and had visited some of the institutions 
for the insane, in England, and on the continent of Europe. We 


have no doubt of the entire competency of this gentleman 
for the office assigned him, and though we admit in all frankness 
that we have felt with our professional brethren over the state, 
that the course pursued by the managers, in selecting for this 
responsible office a citizen of another state, was not awarding 
to the medical profession of New Jersey its due, we believe, 
nevertheless, it is the duty of the physicians of the State to lend 
their aid in the creditable support of the institution. 

The asylum is a New Jersey institution, and it will have to 
contend with much opposition. Independently of the disposition 
which is too often manifested by politicians, to make political 
engines of public establishments under state control, there are four 
rival institutions, more convenient of access to a large portion of 
our population. From the counties south of us, patients can be 
taken to the Pennsylvania Hospital, and to the Retreat at Frank- 
ford, Philadelphia, at less cost, than by going to Trenton, and 
their friends may the more readily visit them, while at the other 
end of the state, the almost hourly intercourse with New York, 
from various points, affords great facilities of speedy access with 
the institutions at Flushing and Bloomingdale. The superin- 
tendents of these institutions being extensively and favourably 
known, and the facility of reaching them from both ends of 
the state, will, we believe, materially interfere with the suc- 
cess of our own institution, without the hearty co-operation 
of physicians, whose advice will be likely to be heeded by 
the friends of the insane, who are not paupers. We do not 
want to see the New Jersey Asylum a mere state poor house for 
incurable lunatics, but we are anxious to find in the annual re- 
ports, emanating from the authorities of the institution, an evi- 
dence that our state is adding its full quota to the list of cures, 
and that we are sustaining an establishment which will compare 
with any in the country. 




Tracts on Generation. Translated from the German, by C. R. 
Gilman, M. D., and Theodore Tellkampf, M. D., of 
New York. Samuel S. & William Wood. New York. 

It is with no little gratification that we call attention to the 
first of the series of " Tracts," which Drs. Gilman and Tell- 
kampf propose to present to the American reader in their own 
language. And if the succeeding works are as interesting 
and original as that now before us, the medical profession in 
this country will have abundant reason to thank these gentlemen 
for the labour which they will have bestowed upon this very 
useful undertaking. 

The tract before us is entitled " Proofs that the Periodic 
Maturation and Discharge of the Ova are in the Mammalia and 
the Human Female, Independent of Coition, as a First Condition 
of their Propagation. By T. L. G. Bischoff, M. D., Professor 
of Physiology, &c, Giessen." 

The work contains 56 pages, and consists mainly of a narra- 
tive of the author's experiments upon living animals, instituted 
with a view of establishing the doctrine announced in the above 

We cannot pay a higher tribute to the ability with which 
this difficult investigation has been conducted by Dr. Bischoff, 
than is contained in the following extract from a letter of the 
celebrated Swiss naturalist, L. Agassiz, to Dr. Gilman — which 
appears in the preface to the Tract. 

" Never were experiments upon this long vexed question 
conducted with more skill and success, to establish the facts 
beyond question, and never were the physiological views 
derived from them deduced with more accuracy and precision. 
It is a model in this kind of experiments, better adapted to 


vindicate the interest of the medical man for comparative 
embryology than any reasoning." 

The question so satisfactorily settled by the experiments of 
Bischoff, is one which has engaged the attention of physiologists 
for many centuries, and about which the most unintelligible 
theories have prevailed. That our readers may have some 
idea of the manner in which it is treated by our author, and of 
the state of opinion on the subject when he commenced his 
investigations, we shall extract a few sentences from that por- 
tion of the Tract which precedes the account of the experi- 

' -Philosophers, theologians, physicians, and naturalists, have, 
in all ages, been striving to overpass this one defect in our 
actual knowledge, the existence of the mammalian and the 
human ovule ; but all their speculations and theories led only to 
darkness. The conviction became general among them that 
the mammalia and man made a singular exception to the mode 
of generation of other animals, and to the conditions to which 
these were subject. 

" With other beings, plants as well as animals, a few only 
excepted, it was evident that their genesis was dependent on 
the fact that a parent organism produced certain materials (ova 
or semen) by the direct action of which, the one upon the 
other, the germ capable of development was produced. Further, 
the formation and the meeting together of these two generative 
materials (both essential to the continuance of the species) 
was nevertheless clearly by no agency of their own, and their 
mutual relations were often under the influence of many acci- 
dental circumstances. 

"The ova were formed, matured, and usually discharged 
by the female organism, at certain regular intervals, quite 
independent of the formation and maturation of the semen of 
the male, which likewise took place either periodically or 

" By an accessory and extraordinary combination of external 
circumstances, which are either absolutely external and quite 
accidental, or in the exercise of certain other functions which 
are developed at the same time, these two materials are brought 
into contact, and thereby germs are rendered capable of deve- 
lopment. If these relations are not established, or if they are 



disturbed, the generative materials nevertheless ripen to a 
certain degree, and are excreted, but no germs capable of 
development result. Examples from the vegetable and the 
portion of the animal kingdom below the mammalia, as in fish, 
amphibia, and birds, are too familiarly known to require a 
particular notice. With the mammalia and man, on the other 
hand, the matter was believed to take 'quite a different shape. 
With them the formation of a germ was generally considered 
as the result of coition. This function with them had the 
object not only to render the female germinative material 
capable of development, but to produce it. These opinions 
had their principal basis in the insufficient knowledge (the 
ignorance indeed) of the pre-existence of the female germinative 
material, of the ovule to coition. 

" in 1827, after centuries of discussion, Von Baer dis- 
covered the ovarian ovule in the mammalia and in the human 
female, and at the same time found in its unexpected smallness 
the reason why it had so long remained unknown. 

" I have always wondered that this discovery did not produce 
a greater and more general sensation, referring as it did to a 
matter which had interested, in so extraordinary a degree, man 
in all ages. It was partially recognised, partially denied, par- 
tially neglected, and only the embryologistsin the most restricted 
meaning of the word, concerned themselves with it, and they 
indeed only in its relations to the development of the embryo, 
and not in its bearings upon the theory of generation generally. 
This theory had too often been built on supposed ova, and was 
too deeply rooted, not to supply for some time the want of 
actual observation, whether it was in harmony with the facts 
of the case or not. After the actual state of things had become 
known, and when the pre-existence of the ovule before and 
independent of all coition was proven, theorists ^still adhered 
to the opinion that coition was the only and essential condition 
upon which the maturation and discharge of an ovum from the 
ovary depended. And all other parts of the process were con- 
sidered (though they clearly pointed to the contrary) only from 
this point of view. 

" I was myself under the influence of this theory to such a 
degree that I was led by it blindly in my former investigations 
on the development of the mammalia." 

Our limited space would prevent even an outline of the 
experiments by which Bischoff was led to the conclusions 


which he has adopted. Suffice it to state that the facts deve- 
loped by his investigations seem satisfactorily to establish, that 
the propagation of the species is " primo loco dependent on a 
spontaneous periodic formation and maturation of ova, and not 
on coition," as was formerly supposed — and that an intimate 
relation exists between this maturation of ova and the menstrual 
function. Upon the latter question the author thus refers to 
recent post-mortem examinations, which we believe are gene- 
rally considered as conclusive. 

" Quite recently direct anatomical proofs of these statements 
have been furnished. Strange as it first appeared, considering 
the endless controversies which have been carried on about the 
corpora lutea, it now however does not admit of a doubt, that 
the ovary, at the time of each menstruation, is in a state of great 
excitement, that a Graafian Vesicle is considerably developed, 
bursts, and a corpus luteum is formed in its place. The inves- 
tigations of Robert Lee, Paterson, W. Jones, Negrier, Gendrin, 
Raciborski, and Pouchet, remove from this question every ves- 
tige of doubt." 

Various other interesting topics bearing upon this obscure 
subject are discussed in the Tract. But we would advise our 
readers to possess themselves of it at an early period, in order 
both for their own instruction, and for the encouragement of the 
publishers to proceed with the series — the completion of which 
would furnish to the American reader a fund of information 
upon the German sciences of Ovology and Embryology (as they 
have not been inappropriately termed) which we believe very 
few possess, and which cannot fail to give an impulse to investi- 
gations in this interesting department of our science. 


TJie Home Book of Health and Medicine : A Popular Treatise 
on the means of avoiding and curing diseases, and of pre- 
serving the health and vigor of the body to the latest period ; 
including an account of the nature and properties of remedies ; 
the treatment of the diseases of women and children^and the 
management of pregnancy and parturition. By a Physician 
of Philadelphia. Philadelphia, Uriah Hunt & Son, 1846. 

We have received from the publishers a copy of this book ; 
it contains 631 pages, neatly printed in double columns, and 
substantially bound. The design of the author in issuing the 
work, as set forth in the Preface, is to make the public ac- 
quainted " with the structure and functions of the human body," 
and with the remedies that are applicable in disease. He 
believes that " by the general diffusion of information on these 
points, quackery of every species will be most successfully com- 
batted, the comfort and success of the regular practitioner, 
aided and facilitated, and the improvement of the healing art 
gready promoted." It is divided into six parts, the first treating 
of Anatomy and Physiology ; the second of Hygiene ; the third of 
Materia Medica ; the fourth of surgical diseases and accidents ; 
the fifth, of diseases, their symptoms, causes and treatment ; and 
the sixth, of pregnancy and parturition, with the diseases and 
accidents of those states. An Appendix is added — treating of 
the uses and doses of medicines. There are two objections in 
our mind to the work ; one is that it is too voluminous for a 
popular treatise, intended as a book of reference for the general 
reader ; and the other, that it is not authenticated by the name 
of its author. And while we believe it might be condensed to 
one-half its present dimensions, and thus be made more availa- 
ble in domestic practice, we are free to confess that the plan of 
the work, and its object, are certainly praiseworthy. The more 
the people become enlightened upon the subject of medicine, 
the less will they have to do with quackery ; the more they 
know of the complexity of the human structure, the less will 
they meddle with its operations, either in health or disease 


122 south's household surgery. 

without the advice of a physician. A concise and familiar trea- 
tise on popular medicine, placed in the hands of intelligent 
parents and guardians, would keep out the herd of charlatans 
that infest society, and ensure to scientific medicine its proper 
rank, and notwithstanding the slight objections which we have 
noticed, as we believe the work before us to be a wholesome 
counseller in domestic society, we hope it may have a circulation 
such as it merits. 

Household Surgery, or Hints on Emergencies. By John F. 
South, one of the Surgeons to St. Thomas's Hospital. Lon- 
don : C. Cox, 1847. 

The origin of this little book, valuable to the student, and to 
those and such as those for whom it was written, was a course 
of village lectures by its author, delivered to aid a literary insti- 
tution ; they were so well received and appreciated as to war- 
rant their publication in the form of a book, to which has been 
given the above title. The work contains 340 12mo. pages, 
and is divided into two parts, the first of which is called the 
" Doctor's Shop." The first article under this caption, contains 
an enumeration of some thirty drugs, which it is proper to keep 
in every family in the country, and then follows a description of 
different poultices, fomentations, lotions, liniments, ointments, 
&c, and the manner of preparing and using them. Under the 
head of " Household Surgery," is a description of the mode in 
which blood letting, blistering, tooth-drawing, vaccination, 
bandaging, &c, are to be severally performed, with some 
general hints as to the manner of dressing ordinary wounds, of 
preparing persons who have received fractures for the reception 
of the surgeon, and of the means of removing them from place 

wood's quarterly retrospect. 123 

to place, &c. Some very useful lessons are also given as to the 
treatment in stifling, drowning, hanging, &c, with observations 
on ventilation and general hygiene. The author asserts that he 
does not wish to interfere with the doctor, and only proposes 
" showing how to manage when and where he is not to be ob- 
tained, and the case is urgent," and very quaintly remarks : 
" But if the doctor is to be had, let no one despise his privilege, 
but avail himself of it; recollect what the best book says, 
1 honour the physician? &c." * * * " Whoever neglects 
this advice, and doctors himself when he can be doctored, is in 
much the same case as the man who conducted his ow T n cause, 
and had a fool for his client." It is a valuable little book; and 
we are glad to find so distinguished a surgeon rendering his 
branch of research and pursuit so accessible to his less informed 
neighbours by this cheerfully written book. 

Woods' Quarterly Retrospect of American and Foreign Practi- 
cal Medicine and Surgery. 

We have received the first two numbers of 9 this new work. 
It is much on the same plan with Braithewaite's Retrospect and 
Ranking's Abstract, it is published by Richard and George S. 
Wood, of New York, at the low price of one dollar per annum. 
The first half of the work (32 pages) is devoted to American, 
and the remainder to foreign intelligence, and each divi- 
sion is again subdivided into departments of Practical 
Medicine, Surgery, Midwifery, Materia Medica, and a Biblio- 
graphical Record. It is a valuable addition to the list of Ame- 
rican Journals, and the low price at which it is offered, requires 
that it should receive an extensive circulation, in order to be 
sustained. We hope this may be the case. 


Summary of the Transactions of the College of Physicians of 
Philadelphia , from June to November, 1847, inclusive. 

This welcome intelligencer has been received, and is as 
usual replete with interesting matter. The present number is 
principally occupied with the Annual Report on Surgery, by 
Dr. Isaac Parrish, which is devoted to the subject of etheriza- 
tion — giving a history of the origin and progress of the discovery. 
After noticing the fact of its free and satisfactory employment in 
this country, and particularly in the Massachusetts General 
Hospital at Boston, reference is made to its enthusiastic recep- 
tion in England and on the Continent as the great American 
discovery ; and interesting statistics are detailed from the French 
and German surgeons, which establish the fact of its safe and 
efficient employment in the hospitals of those countries. In 
the French Hospitals it has been used in 211 operations; out 
of this number 10 terminated fatally — less than the average 
proportion of deaths from the same operations in those institu- 
tions. Reference is also made to a most elaborate memoir upon 
the subject, covering 228 pages, entitled "Ether against Pain," 
issued from Berlin by John Frederick DiefTenbach, a celebrated 
German Surgeon, who has the reputation of being the largest 
operator in Europe, and having used the remedy in a great 
variety of cases, considers it one of the most important disco- 
veries of the age, though he is of the opinion that it is of no 
advantage to the surgeon, and he uses it only for the sake of 
the patient. In the practice of obstetrics the use of the ether is 
steadily on the increase, though there is not sufficient testimony 
to warrant its universal employment at this critical period. Dr. 
Walter Channing, of Boston, is quoted as the first to employ it 
in the practice of midwifery in this country. As a therapeutical 
agent the ether inhalation has been used in a variety of dis- 
eases; and a case is detailed in the report, of an eminent 
member of the medical profession in Philadelphia, and a Fellow 
of the College, who suffered from a violent attack of spasm of 


the neck of the bladder, where the ether was used with a 
most soothing and delightful effect, producing refreshing sleep 
after all anodynes had failed. From seven to eight ounces of 
ether were used during the attack, and no particular excitement 
or delirium was produced ; the functions were naturally per- 
formed, and recovery took place without any unusual symp- 

After giving the favourable side of the picture, the author 
has very fairly collected and arranged the counter reports which 
he has been able to obtain from the various medical journals, 
both at home and abroad. Ten cases of death following the 
use of ether, and supposed to be more or less attributable to its 
influence, have been reported. Dr. Parrish has examined these 
individually and critically, and draws from them the following 

" Firstly. That no case is reported where the patient died 
from the immediate effects of ether, and hence that asphyxia, 
apoplexy, or fatal bleeding had nothing to do with the result. 

" Secondly, That all the deaths occurred after severe opera- 
tions, considered in themselves dangerous to life, and that in 
those cases where death occurred without reaction, the symp- 
toms were in no way peculiar, or different from those occa- 
sionally observed after all large operations. 

" Thirdly. That in two of the cases reported as probably 
attributable to ether, the peculiar effects of the article were 
not fully induced, both patients declaring that they had suffered 

<c Fourthly. That the post-mortem appearances, so far as 
reported, furnish no satisfactory evidence that ether had any 
agency in producing the fatal result. 

" Taking an impartial view of these cases, we can see no 
ground for attributing to ether the fatal issue. Unless it could 
be shown that ether produces serious secondary effects, deve- 
loping themselves some days or weeks after its administration, 
it does not appear philosophical to attribute results to it which 
have occurred long after the nervous system has recovered 
from its influence, especially when such effects may be fairly 
referred to other more obvious causes. Nor is it at all probable, 
reasoning from analogy, that these remote evils would arise. 



A diffusible evanescent vapour, which operates in a few 
minutes and passes off as rapidly, could scarcely leave behind 
it a permanent impression upon the system. The changes 
which it effects in the blood are the result of chemical reactions, 
which must cease as the vapour is withdrawn, and as the 
atmospheric air has free access to the breathing surfaces, and 
whatever mischief is induced should be as sudden and decisive, 
as the action of the producing cause. 

" What, then, is the position of the question so far as the 
present state of facts will enable us to decide ? 

" On the one hand, in favour of the safety and efficiency of 
ether as a means of destroying pain, we have the concurrent 
testimony of many of the most eminent surgeons and obstetri- 
cians in this country and in Europe ; not men of a day, who 
seize upon every novelty as a truth, or take hold of every 
plausible scheme which promises ephemeral notoriety, but 
eminent physicians who have been connected for a long series 
of years with some of the largest hospitals of the world, and 
whose names are inseparably connected with the history and 
literature of these departments of science. In the hands of 
these masters of our art, ether has been given in a multitude 
of the most difficult and hazardous operations in surgery, its 
powers have been tested in various conditions of the economy, 
in childhood and in old age, in the feeble and vigorous, and. in 
the sick and the healthy. It would of course be impossible to esti- 
mate the number of important operations which have been per- 
formed under the influence of ether within the past year, or since 
the'practice has been introduced in different parts of the world ; but 
when it is remembered, that from the first announcement of the 
discovery in Boston up to the present time, etherization has 
been adopted as a preparatory measure, before all large 
operations at the Massachusetts General Hospital, and that it has 
been similarly employed to a great extent in the private surgical 
practice of New England, and to a limited extent in the public 
and private practice of many surgeons in other parts of the 
Union; it must be acknowledged that the experience of this 
country alone would furnish a very large number of cases in 
which it has been used with entire safety and effect. 

" But when we extend our vision to foreign countries, and call 
to mind that during the past nine months it has been adopted in 
most of the large hospitals of Great Britain ; in the vast hospitals 
of Paris, and for the last six months, in the numerous institutions 
of like character in Germany, including the immense hospitals 
at Vienna and Berlin, we can form some idea of the extent to 


which it has been carried, and of the firm hold which this 
great American discovery has taken of the mind of the scientific 

Against these conclusions are arrayed various objections, 
based upon the theory that the inhalation of ether produces an 
alteration in the chemical and vital constitution of the blood — 
that it operates upon the vital fluid, causing a change in its 
character similar to that which occurs in malignant fevers — and 
that the liability to hemorrhage is much increased. Touching 
this subject we make another short extract from the report. 

" In regard to the post-mortem appearances of the blood, viz. 
its darkness and fluidity which have been so much insisted upon 
as evidences of the injurious action of ether ; these prove 
nothing, as they occur in connexion with so many other morbid 
conditions as not of themselves to justify any positive inferences 
as to the pathological condition of the fluid. An emjnent 
pathological anatomist in London, recently stated to Dr. 
Forbes the following opinion on this subject. 'It has,' says 
he, c always been in my mind that the state of the blood coin- 
cides with so great a variety of morbid changes, that I should 
never be able to rely on it, as characteristic of any thing 

" But against these hypothetical objections, we have the 
much more positive evidence of facts. In none of the deaths 
reported as occurring after the use of ether, has hemorrhage 
been considered as the cause, and some operators have even 
remarked that the hemorrhage after large operations upon 
etherized persons has been unusually small. There is also a 
general concurrence in the reports as to the facility with which 
wounds heal, and no complaints which we have seen of the 
occurrence of undue inflammation, sloughing, or other untoward 

The author does not, however, recommend the use of ether 
indiscriminately, but points out the class of cases where it seems 
to him most appropriate, and appears to have discussed the 
subject in a fair and candid manner. The report thus con- 
cludes : 

" In concluding this rapid sketch of the history of this impor- 


tant discovery, we cannot avoid the conclusion, that the facts 
now before the profession attest the safety and efficiency of 
sulphuric ether in destroying the pain attendant on surgical 
operations. As it regards the more extended application of this 
agent to the practice of obstetrics, or to the treatment of painful 
diseases, or even as it relates to its general use in surgery, 
future experience must determine. Like other powerful reme- 
dial agents, the propriety of its employment in particular cases 
must be judged of by the attending practitioner, guided by the 
best lights at his command. 

"That the discovery of the peculiar properties of ether is 
likely to prove highly beneficial in the practice of surgery, we 
cannot doubt, and if future investigations should confirm the 
experience of the past year, it is obvious that a most important 
change will be effected in the practice, not only of this depart- 
ment, but also of obstetrics. 

"If the pain attendant upon the knife of the surgeon, and 
the still more concentrated agony which is the invariable con- 
comitant of the parturient act, can be banished ; while in the 
one case the surgeon proceeds with his duty, and in the other, 
nature accomplishes one of her most important offices, then has 
science achieved a victory over disease and suffering of the 
highest interest to our race. It may be that future experience 
will cast a shade over the fair prospect which appears now to 
be unfolding, and that this event may never be realized ; in the 
meanwhile, it becomes us carefully and impartially to contem- 
plate the progress of this discovery, and to do what our hands 
find to do in establishing the Truth." 

We find also in the Summary the proceedings of the College 
in reference to the practice which prevails to a considerable 
extent among Apothecaries in Philadelphia, of prescribing for 
diseases and accidents. The report of a committee upon the 
subject recommends a circular to be addressed to the Apothe- 
caries, expressing the intention of the College to exert its 
influence to separate the business of prescribing and compound- 
ing medicines; and inquiring of those to whom the circular 
may be sent, whether they are willing to co-operate in the 
movement, &c. &c. We are glad to see that this subject is in 
hand, and hope that it may be so conducted as to remove a 
growing evil. 

payne's materia medica and therapeutics. 129 

Materia Medica and Therapeutics. By Martyn Paine, A. M., 
M. D., Professor'of the Institutes of Medicine and Materia 
Medica in the University of New York ; member of the 
Royal Verein fur Heilkunde in Preussen ; of the Medical 
Society of Leipsic ; of the Montreal Natural History So- 
ciety, and other learned institutions. New York : Samuel S. 
& William Wood, 1848. 

This work has been received too late to allow of the extended 
notice which it appears to deserve. t It contains 411 pages, and is 
intended as a " compendium of Rational Therapeutics," and to 
" indicate the relative therapeutic value of the various articles 
under their different denominations, by arranging them in the 
order of their value." — Preface. The conciseness of the work 
renders it convenient for reference, and the novelty of its arrange- 
ment, consists in its treating of remedies which have not been 
noticed in detail by authors on materia medica generally. The 
different classes of remedies, are divided into orders, and each 
order has its subdivision. Thus we have the first class, anti- 
phlogistics, divided into blood-letting, cathartics, emetics, &c. &c. 
And ^the first in the order, blood-letting, is subdivided into 
general blood-letting, leeching and cupping, attended with di- 
rections for performing these operations, some " general conclu- 
sions relative to loss of blood," &c. 

To the student particularly, it must be a valuable work. It 
may be obtained at 201 Pearl street, New York. 





The law of New Jersey discriminates between physicians 
and "irregular bred pretenders to the healing art." It imposes 
heavy penalties upon the latter for prescribing in cases of dis- 
ease ; and it asserts what is the legitimate course to be pursued 
in order to become a legal and responsible practitioner of 
medicine. While we do not advocate the idea that physicians 
should institute legal processes against those whom the law 
pronounces illegal practitioners, we believe that it would be 
interesting to the profession to know how many there are in our 
State who avow themselves as the open violators of law in 
this respect ; and the by-laws of the Medical Society make it 
the duty of the reporters in the several districts to embody this 
information in their Annual Report to the Standing Committee. 
We believe there are many cases of mal-practice which have 
resulted in death to its unfortunate victims, that are subjects 
of common notoriety in different neighbourhoods, the facts of 
which ought to be collected and submitted in the reports. We 
are aware of the difficulty in testifying positively to what are 
asserted as facts without having witnessed them, but the 
evidence in some instances is so plain as not to admit of con- 
tradiction. We believe a case to have occurred in a neigh- 
bouring county, of a female with a femoral hernia, who was 
visited by a Thomsonian on account of the pain and sickness 
resulting from the protruded bowel. He pronounced it a 
" gathering," and ordered poultices and fomentations. After 


some hours had elapsed he was sent for to see his patient, 
whose pain had increased, and who was no doubt suffering 
the tortures of strangulated hernia. Presuming that the appli- 
cations had " drawn" the part successfully, and that it was 
now ready to open, he plunged his lancet into the sac, and a 
discharge from the intestine ensued. The patient, though some- 
what relieved from the severity of her pain, found herself the 
victim of that most loathsome infirmity, an artificial anus, and 
in a few days died, from the combined effect of bodily and 
mental suffering. A few well authenticated facts of this descrip- 
tion, published to the world, would do more to diminish confidence 
in false systems of practice, than all the personal or combined 
opposition which we can exert against them; we believe too, that 
the most honourable, as well as most effectual plan of testifying 
against such systems, and those who practice them, is to prove 
the dignity of our own profession by an upright and uncompro- 
mising deportment. We hope the Reporters will not lose sight 
of this subject. 


In [our^ last number were inserted the proceedings of the 
National Medical Convention on the subject of securing by law 
a[record of Births, Marriages and Deaths; we refer to the sub- 
ject now to solicit attention to the resolution of Dr. Fithian, 
adopted at the late semi-annual meeting of the State Medical 
Society. The resolution proposes that physicians in different 
townships shall procure from sextons, and other persons, a list 
of all those who may be interred in their respective burial 
grounds, with the names and duration of the diseases to which 
said deaths may be attributed. We think the idea a good one, 
and we see no reason why a record of births may not as con- 
veniently be made in the same list, and the whole arranged in 
tabular form. Any physician who might undertake the task, 
could, by conference with his professional friends in the same 
township, keep such a table with but little inconvenience ; and 


we trust that Dr. Fithian's example in this respect may stimulate 
others to do likewise. The Committee to whom is entrusted 
the duty of presenting this subject to the Legislature, will be 
much strengthened in their efforts by the fact that physicians in 
different sections of the State have already voluntarily entered 
upon the work, and only await the favourable action of the 
Legislature to sustain them in its prosecution and completion. 
A record of marriages may also be obtained from the various 
civil and religious authorities under whose direction this rite is 

How many township reports of births, marriages and deaths, 
shall we have for publication in our next number? 


We invite the attention of our readers to an article in the 
Eclectic department, on the use of Chloroform, as a substitute 
for sulphuric ether. Its employment in several^surgical opera- 
tions and obstetric cases is noticed, and the facts detailed will be 
read with interest. We are informed that Professor J. B. 
Rogers, of the University of Pennsylvania, and others, have 
prepared the article, and that it has been successfully used 
by Professor Samuel Jackson, as a therapeutic agent in several 
obstinate cases of disease. We have as yet, heard nothing of 
its use in surgical practice, though we have no doubt that its 
powers will be speedily tested. Whether it possesses any 
real advantage over the latter agent, remains to be seen. In 
considering the conclusions of our transatlantic friends, we 
must; remember that the discovery was -made by themselves, 
and that they no doubt feel a laudable pride in sustaining its 
character, as at least equal in merit to the American discovery. 
Actuated by something of this feeling, we confess ourselves un- 
willing to surrender at once, the claims of the ether to those of 
the chloroform. The triumphs of the former have secured for 
it a reputation which it will be difficult to supplant, except by 
some very positive evidence of the superiority of the latter. 



We are happy to announce to our readers, that several of 
our medical friends have volunteered to prepare biographies 
of some of the older physicians of the State, who have been, 
in their day, active in establishing the Medical Society, and 
in other means of improving the character of the profession, 
&c. Such reminiscences can not fail to be interesting, and 
we hope the name of every honourable and distinguished 
physician of New Jersey, who has lived before us, may 
have its place in our record, and that the plan may be con- 
tinued, so as to secure a biography of the life and charac- 
ter of those who may successively leave the stage of action. 
Almost every medical man in the state must have access to some 
means of ascertaining the history of those who have preceded 
him ; and we trust that so far as such facts may be useful or 
interesting to the living, that they may be compiled and sent us 
for insertion in a Biographical Record which will appear in the 
pages of the Reporter, whenever there may be materials 
furnished to warrant it. 

The following letter and obituary notice, just received from 
our friend, J. B. Potter, M. D., of Bridgeton, will form number 
one, of the series in our biographical record. 

Bridgeton, Jan. 10th, 1848. 
Mr. Editor, — It is to be acknowledged in our draughts on 
the past, that we should be careful lest " distance lend enchant- 
ment to the view," and we draw up from " old, to this present," 
things "unpicked, unchosen." But incited, I trust, by the 
laudable spirit abroad in some parts, and which ought to pervade 
the whole of our State, of selecting from the rubbish of by-gone 
days, u whatsoever things are of good report," I send for your 
inspection an obituary of Dr. Jonathan Elmer. It was taken, 
probably, from the Trenton Federalist, and written, it is said, by 
Lucius Horatius Stockton. If you can spare a nook in your 
Reporter for its insertion, it may present anew to us the memory 



of a man eminent in his time, and an ornament to our profession. 
Dr. E. was a fellow of the American Philosophical Society, and 
distinguished as a civilian. He was one of the ten that con- 
stituted the first class of the oldest medical school in this 
country, the University of Pennsylvania, which graduated June 
21st, 1768. In his library are about twelve bound manuscript 
volumes, (octavo,) some of which are entitled "Praxis Medica," 
interspersed with the practice of the principal physicians of 
Philadelphia ; particularly of Drs. Redman, Bond and Morgan. 
Among them also is an essay on the " Motion of the Heart, 
delivered (by him) at the meeting of the Junior Medical Society," 
in the Pennsylvania Hospital, in December 1767. Bound up 
among some of his other books, is his Inaugural Thesis, in Latin, 
entitled De Causis et Remediis Litis in Febribus, and dedicated 
" Niro Perillustri D. Benjamino Franklin, L. L. D., R. S. S., 
Armigeros, Societatis Americanse, Philosophical Prcesidi, en in- 
clvtse, nostra? Provincial Nov-Ccesarce, in Aula Brittanica, Pro- 
curator^ Honoratissimo : Viroque Prsecellentissimo, Guliemo 
Franklin, Armigero, Provincias Supradictse Gubernatori, Dig- 
nissimo, &c. 

Bound up also in the same volume, is the Thesis of his class- 
mate, Dr. James Tilton, of " Kent county, on the Delaware," 
" De Hydrope." 

Dr. Elmer died Sept. 3d, 1817, and lies with his kindred in 
the Bridgeton church-yard, West Jersey. 

The death of Jonathan Elmer, announced last week, 
merits a more particular obituary notice. This distinguished 
man was a native of the county of Cumberland, New Jersey, 
and sprung from an ancient and respectable family. In his 
youth he enjoyed the advantages of a good education, and de- 
voting himself to the study of medicine, he graduated as doctor 
in that science, in the University of Pennsylvania, at the com- 
mencement in 1768. He soon began the practice of physic in 
his native county, and speedily attained to a grade in that im- 
portant profession, which elevated him beyond rivalry in his 
own local sphere, and by his profound erudition placed him on 
an equality with the first physicians of the age. At the be- 
ginning of our revolutionary struggle, he did not hesitate im- 



mediately to array himself with those patriots who armed in 
defence of American liberty. He was early elected to Congress, 
where his useful services were duly appreciated, and afterward, 
in many other important stations, legislative, executive and 
judicialy, he persevered to the end of that eventful and glorious 
contest which he had the happiness of seeing terminate in the 
established independence of his country. Nor did his political 
career here terminate. Such was the continued confidence 
placed in him, that in the year 1789, he was selected as one of 
the first representatives of the sovereignty of New Jersey, in 
the Senate of the United States under the present federal con- 
stitution, and by his great talents, in union with Adams, Pater- 
son, Ellsworth, Ames, Boudinot, Schureman, Sinnickson, 
Cadwallader, and other patriots, contributed to the successful 
organization of our government under the administration of 
President Washington. Retiring from this scene, at subsequent 
periods, in a sphere of action more limited, he for several years 
presided with the greatest ability in the court of common pleas 
of the county of Cumberland. 

His literary character was remarkable, and worthy of being 
held up as a model to excite the emulation of our American 
youth. Educated at a period when real science in this country 
was much less extensively diffused among the instructors in our 
schools, than it is at this time, such was the strength of his in- 
tellectual powers and his perseverance in study, that he attained 
to a degree of excellence in the three learned professions, by 
which he would have been distinguished in any age or country 
in the world. It was impossible for a learned and discerning 
man, conversing with him even for a short time, to be insensible 
of the superiority of his attainments. With every branch of 
theology and ecclesiastical history, it is said by those who are 
proficients in those branches of knowledge, he was intimately 
acquainted. If the writer of this feeble tribute to his memory 
may presume to judge of those subjects in which he has, from 
his youth, been conversant — in the knowledge of general litera- 
ture, and the common, statute and equity systems of jurispru- 
dence in England and New-Jersey, the deceased was profoundly 
learned. In medical erudition, the writer well remembers to 
have heard his illustrious contemporary, the late Dr. Rush, fre- 
quently say, that he was exceeded by no physician in the United 
States. In his political opinions, though sensible as became a 
philosopher of the honest diversities of the human mind, and 
therefore perfectly tolerant of those from whom he differed in 


sentiment, he was ever an undeviating disciple of the Wasn- 
ington School, and unyielding to the prejudices, errors and 
follies of the day, he did not shrink from adhering to the integrity 
of his principles, though with the certain knowledge, that this 
course would consign him to the obscure vale of private 
life. There he chose to remain, with his friends and co-pa- 
triots, and by the dignity of his deportment and the cheerful 
tranquillity of his life, reminded us of the sentiment of the ele- 
gant poet — 

u That more true joy Marcellus exil'd feels 
Than Caesar with a Senate at his heels." 

With all the splendor of his character he was not ashamed of 
the Gospel of Christ, which, believing to be the power of God 
to the salvation of sinners, and affording to him the only solid 
ground of hope in the felicity of the life to come, he was for 
several years united in christian communion with the society 
constituting the Presbyterian church in Bridgetown. Such 
was Jonathan Elmer ! He has descended to the grave leav- 
ing a large and respectable circle of friends, relatives and fel- 
low citizens, to lament his death. Few of his fellow labourers 
of equal distinction, survive, and in the course of nature, are 
daily disappearing from the stage of action.* 



The celebrated Prussian Surgeon, John Frederick DeirTenbach, 
died of appoplexy, immediately after his lecture on the 11th of 
November, 1847, in the amphitheatre of the Hospital of 

On the 4th of October, John Morgan, for twenty years lec- 
turer in Guy's Hospital, London. 

Recently — of aneurism of the aorta, Robert Liston, a dis- 
tinguished Surgeon of England, and author of Listen's Practical 

* He was President of the New Jersey Medical Society in 1787. — Ed. 



The Committee appointed under the sixth resolution adopted 
by the Convention which assembled in New York, in May last, 
to prepare a Code of Medical Ethics for the government of the 
medical profession of the United States, respectfully submit the 
following Code. 

John Bell, Isaac Hays, 

G. Emerson, W. W Morris, 

T. C. DunNj A. Clark, 

R. D. Arnold, 
Philadelphia, June 5th, 1847. Committee. 



Art. — Duties of Physicians to their Patients. 

§ 1. A Physician should not only be ever ready to obey the 
calls of the sick, but his mind ought also to be imbued with the 
greatness of his mission, and the responsibility he habitually 
incurs in its discharge. Those obligations are the more deep 
and enduring, because there is no tribunal other than his own 
conscience, to adjudge penalties for carelessness or neglect. 
Physicians should, therefore, minister to the sick with due im- 
pressions. of the importance of their office ; reflecting that the 
ease, the health, and the lives of those committed to their charge, 
depend on their skill, attention and fidelity. They should 
study, also, in their deportment, so to unite tenderness with 
firmness, and condescension with authority, as to inspire the 
minds of their patients with gratitude, respect and confidence. 

§ 2. Every case committed to the charge of a physician 
should be treated with attention, steadiness and humanity. 
Reasonable indulgence should be granted to the mental im- 
becility and caprices of the sick. Secrecy and delicacy, when 
required by peculiar circumstances, should be strictly observed ; 
and the familiar and confidential intercourse to which physicians 
are admitted in their professional visits, should be used with 



discretion, and with the most scrupulous regard to fidelity and 
honour. The obligation of secrecy extends beyond the period 
of professional services; — none of the privacies of personal and 
domestic life, no infirmity of disposition or flaw of character ob- 
served during professional attendance, should ever be divulged 
by him except when he is imperatively required to do so. The 
force and necessity of this obligation are indeed so great, that 
professional men have, under certain circumstances, been pro- 
tected in their observance of secrecy, by courts of justice. 

§ 3. Frequent visits to the sick are in general requisite, since 
they enable the physician to arrive at a more perfect knowledge 
of the disease, — to meet promptly every change which may 
occur, and also tend to preserve the confidence of the patient. 
But unnecessary visits are to be avoided, as they give useless 
anxiety to the patient, tend to diminish the authority of the 
physician, and render him liable to be suspected of interested 

§ 4. A physician should not be forward to make gloomy 
prognostications, because they savour of empiricism, by magnify- 
ing the importance of his services in the treatment or cure of 
the disease. But he should not fail, on proper occasions, to give 
to the friends of the patient timely notice of danger, when it 
really occurs ; and even to the patient himself, if absolutely 
necessary. This office, however, is so peculiarly alarming when 
executed by him, that it ought to be declined whenever it can 
be assigned to any other person of sufficient judgment and 
delicacy. For, the physician should be the minister of hope 
and comfort to the sick ; that, by such cordials to the drooping 
spirit, he may smooth the bed of death, revive expiring life, and 
counteract the depressing influence of those maladies which often 
disturb the tranquillity of the most resigned, in their last mo- 
ments. The life of a sick person can be shortened not only by 
the acts, but also by the words or the manner of a physician. It 
is, therefore, a sacred duty to guard himself carefully in this 
respect, and to avoid all things which have a tendency to dis- 
courage the patient and to depress his spirits. 

§ 5. A physician ought not to abandon a patient because the 
case is deemed incurable; for his attendance may continue to 
be highly useful to the patient, and comforting to the relatives 
around him, even in the last period of a fatal malady, by 
alleviating pain and other symptoms, and by soothing mental 
anguish. To decline attendance, under such* circumstances, 
would be sacrificing to fanciful delicacy and mistaken liberality, 


that moral duty, which is independent of and far superior to all 
pecuniary consideration. 

§ 6. Consultations should be promoted in difficult or pro- 
tracted cases, as they give rise to confidence, energy, and more 
enlarged views in practice. 

§ 7. The opportunity which a physician not unfrequently 
enjoys of promoting and strengthening the good resolutions of 
his patients, suffering under the consequences of vicious conduct, 
ought never to be neglected. His counsels, or even remon- 
strances, will give satisfaction, not offence, if they be proffered 
with politeness, and evince a genuine love of virtue, ac- 
companied by a sincere interest in the welfare of the person to 
whom they are addressed. 

Art. II. — Obligations of Patients to their Physicians. 

§ 1. The members of the medical profession, upon whom 
are enjoined the performance of so many important and arduous 
duties towards the community, and who are required to make 
so many sacrifices of comfort, ease, and health, for the welfare 
of those who avail themselves of their services, certainly have 
a right to expect and require, that their patients should entertain 
a just sense of the duties which they owe to their medical 

§ 2. The first duty of a patient is, to select as his medical 
adviser one who has received a regular professional education. 
In no trade or occupation, do mankind rely on the skill of an 
untaught artist ; and in medicine, confessedly the most difficult 
and intricate of the sciences, the world ought not to suppose 
that knowledge is intuitive. 

§ 3. Patients should prefer a physician, whose habits of life 
are regular, and who is not devoted to company, pleasure, or to 
any pursuit incompatible with his professional obligations. A 
patient should, also, confide the care of himself and family, as 
much as possible, to one physician, for a medical man who has 
become acquainted with the peculiarities of constitution, habits, 
and predispositions, of those he attends, is more likely to be 
successful in his treatment, than one who does not possess that 

A patient who has thus selected his physician, should always 
apply for advice in what may appear to him trivial cases, for the 
most fatal results often supervene on the slightest accidents. It 
is of still more importance than he should apply for assistance in 
the forming stage of violent diseases ; it is to a neglect of this 
precept that medicine owes much of the uncertainty and im- 
perfection with which it has been reproached. 


§ 4. Patients should faithfully and unreservedly communicate 
to their physician the supposed cause of their disease. This is 
the more important, as many diseases of a mental origin simulate 
those depending on external causes, and yet are only to be cured 
by ministering to the mind diseased. A patient should never 
be afraid of thus making his physician his friend and adviser; he 
should always bear in mind that a medical man is under the 
strongest obligations of secrecy. Even the female sex should 
never allow feelings of shame or delicacy to prevent their dis- 
closing the seat, symptoms and causes of complaints peculiar to 
them. However commendable a modest reserve may be in the 
common occurrences of life, its strict observance in medicine 
is often attended with the most serious consequences, and a 
patient may sink under a painful and loathsome disease, which 
might have been readily prevented had timely intimation been 
given to' the physician. 

§ 5. A patient should never weary his physician with a tedious 
detail of events or matters not appertaining to his disease. Even 
as relates to his actual symptoms, he will convey much more 
real information by giving clear answers to interrogatories, than 
by the most minute account of his own framing. Neither should 
he obtrude the details of his business, nor the history of his 
family concerns. 

§ 6. The obedience of a patient to the prescriptions of his 
physicians should be prompt and implicit. He should never 
permit his own crude opinions as to their fitness, to influence his 
attention to them. A failure in one particular may render an 
otherwise judicious treatment dangerous, and even fatal. This 
remark is equally applicable to diet, drink, and exercise. As 
patients become convalescent they are very apt to suppose that 
the rules prescribed for them may be disregarded, and the 
consequence but too often, is a relapse. Patients should never 
allow themselves to be persuaded to take any medicine what- 
ever, that may be recommended to them by the self-constituted 
doctors and doctresses, who are so frequently met with, and who 
pretend to possess infallible remedies for the cure of every dis- 
ease. Hovever simple some of their prescriptions may appear to 
be, it often happens that they are productive of much mischief, 
and in all cases they are injurious, by contravening the plan of 
treatment adopted by the physician. 

§ 7. A patient should, if possible, avoid even the friendly 
visits of a physician who is not attending him, — and when he 
does receive them, he should never converse on the subject of 
his disease, as an observation may be made, without any inten- 


tion of interference, which may destroy his confidence in the 
course he is pursuing, and induce him to neglect the directions 
prescribed to him. A patient should never send for a consulting 
physician without the express consent of his own medical at- 
tendant. It is of great importance that physicians should act in 
concert ; for, although their modes of treatment may be attended 
with equal success when employed singly, yet conjointly they are 
very likely to be productive of disastrous results. 

§ 8. When a patient wishes to dismiss his physician, justice 
and common courtesy require that he should declare his reasons 
for so doing. 

§ 9. Patients should always, when practicable, send for their 
physician in the morning, before his usual hour of going out ; 
for, by being early aware of the visits he has to pay during the 
day, the physician is able to apportion his time in such a man- 
ner as to prevent an interference of engagements. Patients should 
also avoid calling on their medical adviser unnecessarily during 
the hours devoted to meals or sleep. They should always be 
in readiness to receive the visits of their physician, as the deten- 
tion of a few minutes is often of serious inconvenience to him. 

§ 10. A patient should, after his recovery, entertain a just 
and enduring sense of the value of the services rendered him by 
his physician ; for these are of such a character, that no mere 
pecuniary acknowledgment can repay or cancel them. 



Art. I. — Duties for the support of professional character. 

§ 1. Every individual, on entering the profession, as he be- 
comes thereby entitled to all its privileges and immunities, in- 
curs an obligation to exert his best abilities to maintain its dignity 
and honour, and to exalt its standing, and to extend the bounds 
of its usefulness. He should therefore observe strictly, such 
laws as are instituted for the government of its members ; — 
should avoid all contumelious and sarcastic remarks relative to 
the faculty, as a body ; and while, by unwearied diligence, he 
resorts to every honorable means of enriching the science, he 
should entertain a due respect for his seniors, who have, by 
their labours, brought it to the elevated condition in which he 
finds it. 

§ 2. There is no profession, from the members of which 


greater purity of character, and a higher standard of moral ex- 
cellence are required, than the medical ; and to attain such 
eminences is a duty every physician owes alike to his profes- 
sion, and to his patients. It is due to the latter, as without it he 
cannot command their respect and confidence, and to both, be- 
cause no scientific attainments can compensate for the want of 
correct moral principles. It is also incumbent upon the faculty 
to be temperate in all things, for the practice of physic requires 
the unremitting exercise of a clear and vigorous understanding; 
and on emergencies for which no professional man should be 
unprepared, a steady hand, an acute eye, and an unclouded head 
may be essential to the well-being, and even to the life, of a 
fellow creature. 

§ 3. It is derogatory to the dignity of the profession, to resort 
to public advertisements or private cards or handbills, inviting the 
attention of individuals affected with particular diseases — publicly 
offering advice and medicine to the poor gratis, or promising 
radical cures ; or to publish cases and operations in the daily 
prints, or suffer such publications to be made; — to invite laymen 
to be present at operations, — to boast of cures and remedies, — 
to adduce certificates of skill and success, or to perform any 
other similar acts. These are the ordinary practices of empirics, 
and are highly reprehensible in a regular physician. 

§ 4. Equally derogatory to professional character is it, for a 
physician to hold a patent for any surgical instrument, or medi- 
cine ; or to dispense a secret nostrum, whether it be the com- 
position or exclusive property of himself, or of others. For, if 
such nostrum be of real efficacy, any concealment regarding it is 
inconsistent with beneficence and professional liberality ; and, if 
mystery alone give it value and importance, such craft implies 
either disgraceful ignorance, or fraudulent avarice. It is also 
reprehensible for physicians to give certificates attesting the 
efficacy of patent or secret medicines, or in any way lo promote 
the use of them. 

Art. II. — Professional services of physicians to each other. 

§ 1. All practitioners of medicine, their wives, and their 
children while under the paternal care, are entitled to the gra- 
tuitous services of any one or more of the faculty residing near 
them, whose assistance may be desired. A physician afflicted 
with disease is usually an incompetent judge of his own case ; 
and the natural anxiety and solicitude which he experiences at 
the sickness of a wife, a child, or any one who by the ties of 
consanguinity is rendered peculiarly dear to him, tend to ob- 



scure his judgment, and produce timidity and irresolution in his 
practice. Under such circumstances, medical men are pecu- 
liarly dependant upon each other, and kind offices and profes- 
sional aid should always be cheerfully and gratuitously afforded. 
Visits ought not, however, to be obtruded officiously ; as such 
unasked civility may give rise to embarrassment, or interfere 
with that choice, on which confidence depends. But, if a 
distant member of the faculty, whose circumstances are affluent, 
request attendance, and an honorarium be offered, it should not 
be declined ; for no pecuniary obligation ought to be imposed, 
■which the party receiving it would wish not to incur. 

Art. III.— Of the duties of physicians as respects vicarious 


§ 1. The affairs of life, the pursuit of health, and the various 
accidents and contingencies to which a medical man is pecu- 
liarly exposed, sometimes require him temporarily to withdraw 
from his duties to his patients, and to request some of his pro- 
fessional brethren to officiate for him. Compliance with this 
request is an act of courtesy, which should always be performed 
with the utmost consideration for the interest and character of 
the family physician, and when exercised for a short period, all 
the pecuniary obligations for such service should be awarded to 
him. But if a member of the profession neglect his business in 
quest of pleasure and amusement, he cannot be considered as 
entitled to the advantages of the frequent and long-continued 
exercise of this fraternal courtesy, without awarding to the phy- 
sician who officiates the fees arising from the discharge of his 
professional duties. 

In obstetrical and important surgical cases, which give rise 
to unusual fatigue, anxiety and responsibility, it is just that the 
fees accruing therefrom should be awarded to the physician who 

Art. IV. — Of the duties of physicians in regard to Con- 

§ 1. A regular medical education furnishes the only presump- 
tive evidence of professional abilities and acquirements, and 
ought to be the only acknowledged right of an individual to the 
exercise and honours of his profession. Nevertheless, as in 
consultations the good of the patient is the sole object in view, 
and this is often dependant on personal confidence, no intelli- 
gent regular practitioner, who has a license to practice from 
some medical board oi known and acknowledged respectability 


recognized by this association, and who is in good moral and 
professional standing in the place in which he resides, should be 
fastidiously excluded from fellowship, or his aid refused in con- 
sultation when it is requested by the patient. But no one can 
be considered as a regular practitioner, or a fit associate in con- 
sultation, whose practice is based on an exclusive dogma, to 
the rejection of the accumulated experience of the profession, 
and of the aids actually furnished by anatomy, physiology, 
pathology, and organic chemistry. 

§ 2. In consultations no rivalship or jealousy should be in- 
dulged ; candour, probity, and all due respect should be exer- 
cised towards the physician having charge of the case. 

§ 3. In consultations the attending physician should be the 
first to propose the necessary questions to the sick ; after which 
the consulting physician should have the opportunity to make 
such farther inquiries of the patient as maybe necessary to satisfy 
him of the true character of the case. Both physicians should 
then retire to a private place for deliberation ; and the one first 
in attendance should communicate the directions agreed upon 
to the patient or his friends, as well as any opinions which it 
may be thought proper to express. But no statement or discus- 
sion of it should take place before the patient or his friends, ex- 
cept in the presence of all the faculty attending, and by their 
common consent ; and no opinions or prognostications should be 
delivered, which are not the result of previous deliberation and 

§ 4. In consultations, the physician in attendance should de- 
liver his opinion first ; and when there are several consulting, 
they should deliver their opinions in the order in which they 
have been called in. No decision, however, should restrain 
the attending physician from making such variation in the mode 
of treatment, as any subsequent unexpected change in the 
character of the case may demand. But such variation and the 
reasons for it ought to be carefully detailed at the next meeting 
in consultation. The same privilege belongs also to the con- 
sulting physician if he is sent for in an emergency, when the 
regular attendant is out of the way, and similar explanations must 
be made by him, at the next consultation. 

§ 5. The utmost punctuality should be observed in the visits 
of physicians when they are to hold consultation together, and 
this is generally practicable, for society has been considerate 
enough to allow the plea of a professional engagement to take 
precedence of all others, and to be an ample reason for the re- 
linquishment of any present occupation. But as professional 



engagements may sometimes interfere, and delay one of the 
parties, the physician who first arrives should wait for his as- 
sociate a reasonable period, after which the consultation should 
be considered as postponed to a new appointment. If it be the 
attending physician who is present, he will of course see the 
patient and prescribe; but if it be the consulting one, he should 
retire, except in case of emergency, or when he has been called 
from a considerable distance, in which latter case he may 
examine the patient, and give his opinion in writing and under 
seal, to be delivered to his associate. 

§ 6. In consultations, theoretical discussions should be 
avoided, as occasioning perplexity and loss of time. For there 
may be much diversity of opinion concerning speculative points, 
with perfect agreement in those modes of practice which are 
founded, not on hypothesis, but on experience and observation. 

§ 7. All discussions in consultation should be held as secret 
and confidential. Neither by words nor manner should any ot 
the parties to a consultation assert or insinuate, that any part of 
the treatment pursued did not receive his assent. The re- 
sponsibility must be equally divided between the medical at- 
tendants, — they must equally share the credit of success as well 
as the blame of failure. 

§ 8. Should an irreconcilable diversity of opinion occur when 
several physicians are called upon to consult together, the 
opinion of the. majority should be considered as decisive ; but if 
the numbers be equal on each side, then the decision should 
rest with the attending physician. It may, moreover sometimes 
happen, that two physicians cannot agree in their views of the 
nature of a case, and the treatment to be pursued. This is a 
circumstance much to be deplored, and should always be 
avoided, if possible, by mutual concessions, as far as they can 
be justified by a conscientious regard for the dictates of judg- 
ment. But in the event of its occurrence, a third physician 
should, if practicable, be called to act as umpire, and if cir- 
cumstances preventable adoption of this course, it must be left 
to the patient to select the physician in w T hom he is most willing 
to confide. But as every physician relies upon the rectitude of 
his judgment, he should, when left in the minority, politely and 
consistently retire from any further deliberation in the consulta- 
tion, or participation in the management of the case. 

§ 9. As circumstances sometimes occur to render a special 
consultation desirable, when the continued attendance of two 
physicians might be objectionable to the patient, the member of 
the faculty whose assistance is required in such cases, should 



seduously guard against all future unsolicited attendance. As 
such consultations require an extraordinary portion both of time 
and attention, at least a double honorarium may be reasonably 

§ 10. A physician who is called upon to consult, should ob- 
serve the most honourable and scrupulous regard for the char- 
acter and standing of the practitioner in attendance : the practice 
of the latter, if necessary, should be justified as far as it can be, 
consistently with a conscientious regard for truth, and no hint 
or insinuation should be thrown out, which could impair the 
confidence reposed in him, or affect his reputation. The con- 
sulting physician should also carefully refrain from any of those 
extraordinary attentions or assiduities, which are too often prac- 
ticed by the dishonest for the base purpose of gaining applause, 
or ingratiating themselves into the favour of families and indi- 

* Art. V. — Duties of Physicians in cases of interference. 

§ 1. Medicine is a liberal profession, and those admitted into 
its ranks should found their expectations of practice upon the 
extent of their qualifications, not on intrigue or artifice. 

§ 2. A physician, in his intercourse with a patient under the 
care of another practitioner, should observe the strictest caution 
and reserve. No meddling inquiries should be made ; no dis- 
ingenuous hints given relative to the nature and treatment of his 
disorder ; nor any course of conduct pursued that may directly 
or indirectly tend to diminish the trust reposed in the physician 

§ 3. The same circumspection and reserve should be ob- 
served, when, from motives of business or friendship, a 
physician is prompted to visit an individual who is under the 
direction of another practitioner. Indeed, such visits should 
be avoided, except under peculiar circumstances, and when 
they are made, no particular inquiries should be instituted 
relative to the nature of the disease, or the remedies employed, 
but the topics of conversation should be as foreign to the case 
as circumstances will admit. 

§ 4. A physician ought not to take charge of, or prescribe for 
a patient who has recently been under the care of another 
member of the faculty in the same illness, except in cases of 
sudden emergency, or in consultation with the physician pre- 
viously in attendance, or when the latter has relinquished the 
case or been regularly notified that his services are no longer 
desired. Under such circumstances no unjust and illiberal 


insinuations should be thrown out in relation to the conduct or 
practice previously pursued, which should be justified as far as 
candour, and regard for truth and probity will permit ; for it 
often happens, that patients become dissatisfied when they do 
not experience immediate relief, and, as many diseases are 
naturally protracted, the want of success, in the first stage of 
treatment, affords no evidence of a lack of professional know- 
ledge and skill. 

§ 5. When a physician is called to an urgent case, because 
the family attendant is not at hand, he ought, unless his assist- 
ance in consultation be desired, to resign the care of the patient 
to the latter immediately on his arrival. 

§ 6. It often happens, in cases of sudden illness, or of recent 
accidents and injuries, owing to the alarm and anxiety of 
friends, that a number of physicians are simultaneously sent for. 
Under these circumstances courtesy should assign the patient to 
the first who arrives, who should select from those present, any 
additional assistance that he may deem necessary. In all such 
cases, however, the practitioner who officiates, should request 
the family physician, if there be one, to be called, and, unless 
his further attendance be requested, should resign the case to 
the latter on his arrival. 

§ 7. When a physician is called to the patient of another 
practitioner, in consequence of the sickness or absence of the 
latter, he ought, on the return or recovery of the regular 
attendant, and with the consent of the patient, to surrender the 

§8. A physician, when visiting a sick person in the country, 
may be desired to see a neighbouring patient who is under the 
regular direction of another physician, in consequence of some 
sudden change or aggravation of symptoms. The conduct to 
be pursued on such an occasion is to give advice adapted to 
present circumstances ; to interfere no farther than is absolutely 
necessary with the general plan of treatment ; to assume no 
future direction, unless it be expressly desired ; and, in this last 
case, to request an immediate consultation with the practitioner 
previously employed. 

§ 9. A wealthy physician should not give advice gratis to the 
affluent : because his doing so is an injury to his professional 
brethren. The office of a physician can never be supported as 
an exclusively beneficent one ; and it is defrauding, in some 
degree, the common funds for its support, when fees are dis- 
pensed with, which might justly be claimed. 


§ 10. When a physician who has been engaged to attend a 
case of midwifery is absent, and another is sent for, if delivery 
is accomplished during the attendance of the latter, he is entitled 
to the fee, but should resign the patient to the practitioner first 

Art. VI. — Of differences between Physicians. 

§ 1. Diversity of opinion, and opposition of interest, may, in 
the medical, as in other professions, sometimes occasion contro- 
versy and even contention. Whenever such cases unfortunately 
occur, and cannot be immediately terminated, they should be 
referred to the arbitration of a sufficient number of physicians, 
or a court-medical. 

As peculiar reserve must be maintained by physicians 
towards the public, in regard to professional matters, and as 
there exist numerous points in medical ethics and etiquette 
through which the feelings of medical men may be painfully 
assailed in their intercourse with each other, and which cannot 
be understood or appreciated by general society, neither the 
subject matter of such differences nor the adjudication of the 
arbitrators should be made public, as publicity in a case of 
this nature may be personally injurious to the individuals con- 
cerned, and can hardly fail to bring discredit on the faculty. 

Art. VII. — Of Pecuniary Acknowledgments. 

§ 1. Some general rules should be adopted by the faculty, in 
every town or district, relative to pecuniary acknowledgments 
from their patients ; and it should be deemed a point of honour 
to adhere to these rules with as much uniformity as varying cir- 
cumstances will admit. 



Art. I. — Duties of the profession to the public. 

§ 1. As good citizens, it is the duty of physicians to be ever 
vigilant for the welfare of the community, and to bear their part 
in sustaining i's institutions and burdens : they should also be 
ever ready to give counsel to the public in relation to matters 
especially appertaining to their profession, as on subjects of 


medical policy, public hygiene, and legal medicines. It is their 
province to enlighten the public in regard to quarantine regula- 
tions,— the location, arrangement, and dietaries of hospitals, 
asylums, schools, prisons, and similar institutions,— -in relation 
to the medical policy of towns, as drainage, ventilation, &c,— - 
and in regard to measures for the prevention of epidemic and 
contagious ^diseases ; and when pestilence prevails, it is their 
duty to face the danger, and to continue their labours for the 
alleviation of the suffering, even at the jeopardy of their own 

§ 2. Medical men should also be always ready, when called 
on by the legally constituted authorities, to enlighten coroners' 
inquests and courts of justice, on subjects^strictly medical,— such 
as involve questions relating to sanity, legitimacy, murder by 
poisons or other violent means, and in regard to the various other 
subjects embraced in the science of Medical Jurisprudence. 
But in these cases, and especially when they are required to 
make a post-mortem examination, it is just, in consequence of 
the time, labour and skill required, and the responsibility and 
risk they incur, that the public should award them a proper 

§ 3. There is no profession, by the members of which, 
eleemosynary services are more liberally dispensed, than the 
medical, but justice requires that some limits should be placed to 
the performance of such good offices. Poverty, professional 
brotherhood, and certain public duties referred to in section one 
of this chapter, should always be recognized as presenting valid 
claims for gratuitous services ; but neither institutions endowed 
by the public or by rich individuals, societies for mutual benefit, 
for the insurance of lives or for analogous purposes, nor any pro- 
fession or occupation, can be admitted to possess such privilege. 
Nor can it be justly expected of physicians to furnish certificates 
of inability to serve on juries, to perform military duty, or to 
testify to the state of health of persons wishing to insure their 
lives, obtain pensions, or the like, without a pecuniary ac- 
knowledgment. But to individuals in indigent circumstances, 
such professional services should always be cheerfully and freely 

§ 4. It is the duty of physicians, who are frequent witnesses 
of the enormities committed by quackery, and the injury to health 
and even destruction of life caused by the use of quack medi- 
cines, to enlighten the public on these subjects, to expose the 
injuries sustained by the unwary from the devices and preten- 
sions of artful empirics and impostors. Physicians ought to 



use all the influence which they may possess, as professors in 
Colleges of Pharmacy, and by exercising their option in regard 
to the shops to which their prescriptions shall be sent, to dis- 
courage druggists and apothecaries from vending quack or secret 
medicines, or from being in any w 7 ay engaged in their manufac- 
ture and sale. 

Art. II. — Obligations of the public to physicians. 

§ 1. The benefits accruing to the public directly and indirectly 
from the active and unwearied beneficence of the profession, are 
so numerous and important, that physicians are justly entitled to 
the utmost consideration and respect from the community. The 
public ought likewise to entertain a just appreciation of medical 
qualifications ; — to make a proper discrimination | between true 
science and the assumptions of ignorance and empiricism, — to 
afford every encouragement and facility for the acquisition of 
medical education, — and no longer to allow the statute books to 
exhibit the [anomaly of exacting knowledge from physicians, 
under liability to heavy penalties, and of making them obnoxious 
to punishment for resorting to the only means of obtaining it. 

Translated from the French for the New Jersey Medical Reporter. 

"When the Medical Union of the first of January last was 
the first to call the attention of the Medical Profession of 
France to the remarkable effects of the Ethereal inhalation, who 
could foresee that before the end of the year, the ether, scarcely 
in possession of the happy privilege of taking aw 7 ay from Sur- 
gical operations, their awful tortures, should see itself dethroned 
by a substance yet more beneficial. * * # * 

Professor Simpson, of Edinburgh, whose interesting operations 
we have already often mentioned, after numerous experiments 
pursued with as much zeal as success, has just demonstrated a 
fact of great importance, already announced in France by M. 
Flourens. It is the anaesthetic property of the perchloride 
of formyle or Chloroform. To give to France and to 
French Physicians all the honour of priority in this disco- 
very, w T e will cite the following passage of an account given 
by the Academy of Sciences, at the sitting of March 8th, 1847, 
Yol. 24. p. 342 " M. Flourens expresses himself thus, " We 
remember that chlorohydric ether has given the same result as 


sulphuric ether, and the use of chlorohydric ether has led me to 
try the new substance under the name of chloroform. At the 
end of some minutes the animals submitted to the inhalation 
of chloroform were entirely etherized. We exposed the spinal 
marrow, the posterior nerves were insensible, and on five 
anterior nerves being successively tried, two alone were capable 
of motion, the three others had lost it." Thus it is incon- 
testible that M. Flourens was the first to employ the chloro- 
form ; but to M. Simpson, as we shall see, belongs the 
honour of having tried it on man, in a manner, entirely 
satisfactory. From the beginning of the employment of the 
ethereal vapour, the strong persistent and disagreeable odour of 
sulphuric ether, the irritation which it often produces on the 
bronchial tubes during the first inhalation ; the considerable 
quantity of the liquid which is necessary to produce the 
effect especially in the prolonged cases of accouchement, &c, 
inspired M. Simpson with a desire to find a volatile liquid 
which might offer the same advantages as the ether without 
its inconveniences. In this research he has successively re- 
viewed several chemical products which he selected on account 
of their agreeable odour, and of which we give here the enume- 
ration for those of our readers who should like to enter upon 
the same researches. The chlorohydrate of chloric acetyle, 
or liquor of the Dutch, the nitrous ether, the benzine la 
vapeur dHodiforme^ and at last the Chloroform, which ought 
to compensate him for all his trouble. It was after the counsel 
of M. Waldie that he undertook to study the properties of this 
last agent. The chloroform is a limpid, colourless liquid, very 
volatile, endowed with an agreeable odour, and sweet, pleasant 
taste. It had been discovered and described by M. Soubeiran, 
and M. Leibig in 1842. M. Dumas had determined its com- 
position in 1835. Some physicians have prescribed it inter- 
nally. Dr. Guillot has advised it in small doses, suspended in 
100 parts of a vehicle as an antispasmodic in Asthma. Before 
publishing his discovery, M. Simpson carefully observed the 
effects of the anesthesique agent, in numerous and varied cases. 
By the happiest chance, Professor Dumas found himself at 
Edinburgh at the epoch when the first surgical operations 
were performed, in which they had recourse to the inhalation of 

These facts thus acquire a greater degree of authenticity and, 
as M. Simpson says, Professor Dumas could not witness with- 


out lively interest the effects of a substance, with the history of 
which his name is so intimately connected. These operations 
were performed at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh. 

A child of 4 or 5 years old, affected with necrosis in one of 
the bones of the fore-arm, who could only speak the Gaelic 
dialect, and to whom of course we could not explain what was 
to be done, was the first submitted to the inhalation of Chloro- 
form. We approached him with a handkerchief on which a 
little of the chloroform had been spilt : this movement, which 
he did not understand, alarmed him, and he made efforts to 
escape, but Dr. Simpson restrained him gently, ami caused him to 
breathe the vapour which emanated from the handkerchief. 
After a few inhalations, the child ceased crying, fell into a 
profound sleep and began to snore — Professor Miller im- 
mediately made a deep incision, penetrating to the injured bone, 
and with forceps withdrew the radius, in a state of almost total 
decay. During this operation, and the explorations of the 
wound with the finger, the child did not give the least evidence 
of pain. 

He remained in a sound sleep, and was carried back to bed in 
that state. At the end of half an hour, like a child who awakens 
from a natural sleep, his eye was sparkling and clear, and his 
countenance mild and peaceful — a result which we do not com- 
monly obtain after etherization. After this child, it was the turn 
of a soldier, who had an ulcer on the cheek, in consequence of ex- 
foliation of the maxillary bone. The chloroform was presented 
to him on a sponge of conical shape. At first he seemed dis- 
posed to move his hands, but he soon fell asleep and snored. 
Prof. Miller then made a long incision which crossed the inferior 
jaw, and the hardened skin which adhered to this bone was 
separated by a long dissection, the edges of the ulcer were 
cleansed, and the union of the wound was maintained by several 
points of suture. This fact offers, above all, some interest, as 
it treats of an operation practised in the region of the mouth, 
and it has been said that ethereal inhalation was not applicable 
in cases of this kind. It certainly would have been impossible 
to operate if a complicated apparatus had been placed at the 
mouth of the patient. The third patent was a young man who 
was affected with necrosis of the first phalanx of the large toe, 
and ulceration of the integuments. He commenced inhalation 
by means of a sponge, as in the preceding case. The patient 
became insensible almost immediately — in the space of half a 
minute — and remained perfectly quiet while they took off the 



morbid mass by means of amputation of the large toe, on a level 
with the middle part of the second phalanx. The last operation 
was clone by Dr. Duncan. The quantity of chloroform em- 
ployed in the three cases just narrated, did not exceed in the whole 
15 grammes, and Prof. Miller remarked to the pupils that in 
order to produce the same effect, it would have been necessary 
to have used several ounces of ether. M. Simpson, who for 
more than six months had employed the ethereal inhalation 
with but few exceptions in the cases of accouchement which 
occurred in his practice, and this with the most satisfactory re- 
sults, could not fail to employ this new anaesthetic agent. The 
first woman to whom he applied it, had already had her first 
accouchement, which, after three days of suffering, could only be 
terminated by perforating the head of the foetus. In her second 
labour, three hours and a half after the commencement of her 
pains, and before the first stage of labour was accomplished, M. 
Simpson placed her under the influence of chloroform. To do 
this, he rolled a pocket handkerchief in the form of a funnel, wet 
the extremity with half a coffee-spoonful of liquid, and applied 
it to the mouth and teeth of the woman. In consequence of the 
evaporation, it was necessary to moisten the handkerchief a 
second time in the space of ten to twelve minutes. The child 
was born twenty- five minutes after the commencement of inha- 
lation, the mother remained longer asleep than when the ether 
was administered to her ; the cries of the child did not awaken 
her at all, as we commonly observe when this last agent has 
been employed ; she awoke some moments after the expulsion of 
the placenta, and after the child had been taken to another room; 
then she looked about her, saying that she had enjoyed a good 
sleep, which she much needed, and that would now render her 
able to bear her pains. After a few minutes, finding no pains 
at all, she expressed a fear that the sleep might have suspended 
her labour, and they took much pains to convince her that she 
was already delivered, and that the child they presented to her 
was her own. All the facts which we have thus briefly related, 
are indispensable in order that our readers may acquire an 
exact idea of the effects produced, by the inhalation of 
chloroform, and that they may appreciate the differences which 
exist between these effects, and those of the sulphuric ether. 
In fine, M. Simpson has before him more than 50 cases of chlo- 
roform inhalation, which have enabled him to lay down the 
following conclusions, which we extract from a work he has 
been pleased to address us. A 


1. Much less chloroform is required than ether to produce 
insensibility. From 100 to 120 drops, and sometimes much less, 

2. Its action is more rapid and complete, while it is generally 
more durable ; very often from 10 to 20 full inspirations will 
produce the effect ; the time of the surgeon is thus spared ; 
moreover, the period of excitement which belongs to all the 
narcotic agents is shortened or even annihilated, the patient does 
not manifest the same tendency to hilarity and talkativeness. 

3. The inhalation of chloroform is much more agreeable than 
that of the ether. 

4. By virtue of the small quantity of chloroform which is ne- 
cessary, its employment will be less expensive than that of the 
ether, much more so as there is room to hope that the process 
of obtaining it will be simplified. 

5. Its odour is far from being disagreeable. Its perfume does 
not adhere to the clothing, and is not exhaled from the breath 
of the person in taking it, as is generally the case with ether. 

6. As much less is wanted, it is much easier to be carried 
about than the ether. 

7. It does not require the employment of any apparatus or 
instrument ; it generally suffices to produce the desired effect in 
one or two minutes, to spill a little of this liquid in the hollow 
of a sponge, of a conical form, or on a pocket handkerchief, or 
a piece of paper, which is held on the mouth and nostrils ; in this 
manner the inhalation is soon made. 

The learned gentlemen, says M. Simpson, to whom we are 
indebted for the knowledge of chloroform, had no expectation 
that it would at some future time be applied to such an important 

Is this not a good reply, among many others, to all those who 
appreciate discoveries only from their immediate practical re- 
sults, and who condemn all researches inspired exclusively by a 
love of science. Here is a substance which at first appeared 
to have interest only as an object of scientific curiosity, but 
which subsequently acquires an immense importance. 

The process employed by M. Soubeiran, in the preparation 
of chloroform, consists in treating the hypo-chloride of lime by 
1.24 of its volume of alcohol ; at the end of 24 hours he distils, by 
mild heat, taking care not to fill the horn but two-thirds, in 
order that the mass may not overflow. He adds water to 
separate from the alcohol, the perchloride of formyle which is 


rectified over a sand bath. In order to obtain it perfectly pure, 
he allows it to digest on chloride of calcium, and distills again 
with concentrated sulphuric acid. * * * They have com- 
menced this week to make use of chloroforme in the hospitals 
of Paris. Some patients put to sleep by the inhalation of this 
substance, have been operated upon without feeling any pain, 
and on waking, they have felt as well as usual. The results 
have generally answered the expectations which the facts sub- 
mitted by M. Simpson have revealed. — French paper. 

Case of William Freem,an 9 the Murderer of the Van Nest 
Family. By Blanchard Fosgate, M. D., of Auburn, N. Y. 
— William Freeman — the murderer of the Van Nest Family — 
was a native of Auburn, Cayuga Co., N. Y., twenty-three 
years old. In stature he measured about five feet seven inches, 
and when in health weighed in the vicinity of one hundred and 
fifteen pounds. He had a broad chest, and was of muscular 
make. With the exception of a slight admixture of aboriginal 
blood, he was of African descent. 

At the age of sixteen he was sentenced to five years' im- 
prisonment in the State prison at Auburn, for grand larceny. 
It was long since conceded that of this charge he was innocent. 
His sentence expired in September, 1845. He left his prison 
conscious of the injustice he had suffered, and had imbibed an 
idea that he was entitled to pay for his time. This sentiment 
could not be eradicated from his mind, and on several occasions 
he applied for warrants against those he supposed liable. Re- 
muneration with him was the one idea. Failing in this mode 
of obtaining redress, he armed himself with a common butcher's 
knife, and a cane with a blade attached to the lower end, and 
from his lodging made his way to the Owasco Lake, at about 
sunset on the 1 2th of March, 1846. After examining two or three 
premises, he finally selected the residence of Mr. Van Nest as 
the proper place to begin "his work," as he termed it, and 
there massacred Mr. Van Nest, his wife and one child, aged 
two years, and Mrs. Wycoff, aged 70. He stabbed Mr. 
Vanarsdale in the chest, who subsequently recovered. In the 
affray he entered every room in the house, both above and 
below, but took nothing away. He went to the stable, un- 
fastened and mounted a horse, and was some rods from the 
scene of devastation in the incredibly short space of five 
minutes from the time of entering the house, as was proved in 


evidence. Three days afterwards he was committed to Cayuga 
county jail to await his trial. 

He was tried at a special session of Oyer and Terminer, July, 
1846 — first, as to whether he was sane at the time of trial, and 
secondly, on the indictment. A verdict of svfficient soundness 
of mind to be put on trial was rendered on the preliminary 
issue, and of w*ilful murder on the indictment. Subsequently, 
however, a new trial was granted by the Supreme Court. 
A trial calling forth so much talent in its prosecution, and 
arousing such fearful excitement among the people, is of rare 

On the part of the people, the cause was conducted by Hon. 
John Van Buren, Attorney-General of the State of New York, 
and for the defence by Hon. William H. Seward, ex-governor 
of this State. 

My knowledge of the prisoner commenced on the 16th of 
March, 1845, being the day after his commitment, and it con- 
tinued until the completion of a post-mortem examination of his 
body on the twenty-first of August, 1847. 

During the scene at Van Nest's, he received a severe w T ound 
in the articulation of the right thumb with the carpus — the 
artery barely escaping division. This circumstance saved the 
lives of other members of the family, because, to use his own 
expression, " he could'nt handle his hand any longer." 

My services were required on account of this injury. In ad- 
dition to the wound, I also found him entirely deaf in the left, 
and partially so in the right ear. 

It was a singular circumstance that he never made an inquiry 
as to either the extent or condition of the injury, or the time 
necessary to complete a cure, or the prospect of recovering the 
use of his hand — though it was the right, and as a labourer 
was his main dependence. Neither did he complain of any 
sensibility in the wound, although the physical evidences of 
pain accompanying the inflammatory stage were such as to 
leave no doubt of its existence. In fact from the time of his 
commitment until the day of his death, although he often saw, 
and was attended by me through his last sickness, he asked 
only two questions, one about his medicine, the other regarding 
his diet, and these were made during his last illness. 

During the principal part of his incarceration, he passed his 
time standing ; his body erect — his head a little drooping, and 
with arms folded. He sustained this posture with statue-like 
stillness — indicating great muscular strength. He exhibited a 


calm, quiet expression of countenance, occasionally broken by a 
smile, which had the appearance of just bursting into laughter, 
but woukl quickly subside leaving the same unalterable ex- 
pression, as undisturbed as though a gleam of mrrthfulness had 
never occupied his fancies. To the careless observer, it ap- 
peared as though he endeavoured to suppress an irresistible pro- 
pensity to laugh. This smile was never accompanied by any 
vocal sound, but often glowed upon his feature, regardless of 
time, place or circumstance, indicative of intense mental emo- 
tion. For this emotion he could never assign a cause. I say 
he never could, because, when asked, he always said he ' didn't 
know.' My conclusion is nlso based upon the remarkable fact, 
that on the trial seventy-two witnesses on both sides coincided 
in the opinion, that the prisoner did not intend to deceive in any 
reply made to the numerous interrogatories put to him. 

His deafness increased until the sense of hearing was nearly, 
i-f not quite, obliterated. I doubt whether he beard any con- 
versation for the last two weeks of his life ; at all events, I 
could not get a reply that harmonized with my question-. 

On the 12th of April, 1847, I was called to see the patient 
as being "not very well." He had a quick thready pulse — 
considerable cough, with free expectoration — not much appe- 
tite, but rather thirsty. He made no allusion to these symp- 
toms, but directed my attention to his left ear, which discharged 
pus profusely. From this time forth, the aural discharge con- 
tinued, accompanied by all the symptoms of tubercular phthisis, 
until his existence terminated, six days after the chain that 
bound him to the masonry of his cell had been removed. 

About three weeks previous to his decease, I observed a pro- 
minent protrusion of the left eye, and upon further examination 
there proved to be an entire obliteration of vision. He could 
not close the lids over it, for they, with all the muscles of that 
side of the face, were paralyzed, and the mouth considerably 
drawn to the right. The cornea of both organs had much the 
same appearance. The loss of vision, I am inclined to think, 
was the result of functional, not organic lesion. The protrusion 
depended most probably upon the loss of muscular power in its 
motor apparatus, in common with the muscles of that side of 
the face. The globe, in articulo mortis, recovered in a great 
measure its natural location, as did the paralyzed muscles of the 
face — a common occurrence of facial distortion from nervous 
lesion at death. 

Owing to insufficiency of light in the cell, but more par- 
ticularly to the shattered condition of the patient — being deaf, 



almost blind, and nearly speechless — no satisfactory account of 
symptoms or the effect of remedies could be obtained from him. 
As this case presents points of interest in many particulars, I 
would remark that phrenologically, Mr. Fowler says, " he is 
very defective in the mental temperament, and has great pre- 
dominance in the muscular. His propensities (with the ex- 
ception of self-esteem and firmness, very large — and com- 
bativeness and destructiveness, large) are all small, and have 
but little influence. The intellectual faculties are not so small, 
yet, the quality of brain considered, their influence is quite 
limited. He has one of the most imperfect developements of 
brain I ever saw. He has no real balance to his mind ; it is en- 
tirely onesided, he being at the mercy of circumstances, and the 
stronger propensities." (See Phrenological JLlmanac in press 
for 1848.) Another phrenologist, though of less notoriety, has 
allow r ed him a much better developement ; but whatever the ex- 
ternal evidences of mind the contour of his head may denote, 
they all have reference to a healthy brain. 

1 have measured his cranium in two ways :• First, by passing 
a string across the frontal and around the spinous process of 
the occipital bones. It measured, in the greatest circumference, 
twenty-one inches. Secondly, after the directions laid down in 
Combe's phrenology by Callipers. 

Viz. from occipital spine to individuality 7 3-8 inches. 
" occipital spine to ear 4 4-8 " 

" ear to individuality 4 6-8 " 

( " ear to firmness 5 3-16 " 

" destructiveness to destructiveness 5 3-8 "' 
" cautiousness to cautiousness 4 7-16 " 

" ideality to ideality 5 3-8 " 

On proceeding to a post-mortem examination, the body was 
found extremely emaciated. The costal and pulmonary pleura, 
though easily separated, were extensively adhered, and the 
lungs were an almost entire mass of disease. Tuberculous mat- 
er was interspersed with abscesses throughout the whole organ. 
The pericardium contained about one and a half gills of serum. 
The heart contained polypi, but had a healthy appearance. 
Liver natural. Gall bladder a little distended. Mucous mem- 
brane of the stomach slightly inflamed. Intestinal mucous coat 
healthy. Mesenteric glands tuberculous. Urinary bladder 
distended. Kidneys natural. The peritoneum appeared 
healthy, but the sac contained some fluid. 

Upon opening the cranium, the bones were found rather thin- 
ner than ordinary, particularly for a coloured subject, and the 


dura mater was adherent to a portion of the occiput. The an- 
terior portion of this membrane was congested and inflamed, 
with considerable serum between it and the arachnoid. This 
latter tunic was somewhat thickened and congested. The an- 
fractuosities of the right hemisphere of the cerebrum were filled 
with serum. The superficial vessels of the right anterior lobe 
highly congested on the superior surface. Cerebellum to all 
appearance healthy. 

The whole brain, separate from the dura mater, weighed 
43 3-4th ounces avoirdupois. Cerebrum 38 ounces. Cerebel- 
lum 5 3-4th ounces. 

On section of the medullary substance, it was found thickly 
studded with bright red points. The right thalami appeared to 
have undergone some change, and the whole superior brain 
was more or less congested. The membrane covering the pe- 
trous portion of the left cavity was congested, and the remain- 
ing parts of it appeared healthy. 

There was caries of the inner part of the petrous portion of 
the left temporal bone. The membrana tympani, with the in- 
ternal structure of the ear, most obliterated. There was a 
necrosis containing fetid pus, having no perceptible connection 
with the external ear. 

Remarks. — The important question connected with this sub- 
ject is, whether the pathological state of the brain, its mem- 
branes and the ear, was one of long standing or of recent 
occurrence ? On this point rests the physical evidence of the 
prisoner's accountability. — If by possibility it could be deter- 
mined that the organ of mental manifestation was without 
disease when the crime was perpetrated, then depravity un- 
paralleled must be assigned as the only cause ; and if so, the 
disease of the organ at his decease could not be held in extenua- 
tion of his crimes. 

That the diseased condition of the brain was of long stand- 
ing, appears to be unquestionable from the fact, that the men- 
tal organ could not sustain so great a lesion as the autopsy 
presented, without the mind having exhibited sudden and vio- 
lent derangement, as well as other symptoms which accompany 
its acute diseases. — This, however, was not the case. He 
never complained of, or exhibited the ordinary symptoms in 
such instances, nor even gave evidence of any mental change 
whatever ; but on the contrary, presented the same character- 
istics throughout. During his last sickness, there was not a 
single symptom indicating acute inflammation of the brain, and 
yet on examination after death, there were abundant and 
unequivocal evidences of inflammatory action there. 


The disease of the ear also was chronic, and dated its com- 
mencement some months previous to the commission of the 
crime. On -his trial it was proved in evidence that about two 
years previous, when an inmate of the state prison — he was 
struck on the head with a board, the blow splitting the weapon 
into fragments. He attributed his deafness to this cause, or, to 
give his own description, "it knocked his words down his 
throat — his ears dropped down — his kernels (meaning the ton- 
sils) dropped." Now the infliction of this blow upon a thin 
skull, associated with his own account of its effects, would lead 
us to conclude that the concussion seriously injured the. auditory 
apparatus. It possibly burst the tympanum,and if so, it opened 
a communication between the external ear and the fauces, 
which induced the remark that " it knocked his words down 
his throat," &c. Is it not a just conclusion, that from this in- 
jury the diseased action was set up which ultimately involved 
the whole brain ? 

Whether the facial paralysis was the result of cerebral con- 
gestion, or whether it was owing to a diseased state of the 
nerves of motion in connection with the condition of the ossa 
petrosa, may be questionable, because the nerves, as they 
passed the brain, were apparently healthy ; but the right 
hemisphere of the brain being the most deeply implicated in the 
organic derangement, the paralysis would appear, as it did in 
this case, in the muscles of the opposite side. 

It should not be forgotten, that the deceased had passed 
through scenes of blood seldom equalled, w T here but a single in- 
dividual was the aggressor; that he had been surrounded by 
the wild fury of an enraged populace for hours ; that he had 
been chained, and for a portion of the time bedded upon the 
stone floor of a dimly-lighted cell, for almost eighteen months ; 
suffering the jeers and grimaces of inhuman and uncounted 
spectators ; wasting by a slow process of consumption ; sus- 
taining the blight of one physical energy after another; with 
little compassion and less than ordinary attention; and through 
the whole period, having scarcely asked a question regarding 
either friend or foe, soliciting no favor, showing no hatred, ex- 
hibiting no remorse, entering no complaint, and through all, 
sustaining an undisturbed tranquillity. 

From this concatenation of circumstances, this unruffled, 
equable, almost idiotic state of mind, that no external relation 
could disturb, or internal influence alter, we can scarcely come 
to any other conclusion by pathological reasoning, than thaf the 
state of mind which he exhibited^ subsequent to his arrest, de- 


ponded on a chronic derangement of the mental organs, and must 
have existed antecedent to the crime itself. If such a combi- 
nation of pathological facts, and all the other circumstances 
attending the prisoner from his arrest to his death, do not 
establish an unsound state of mind, they at least present one of 
the most exiraordinary cases furnished by the annals of our 
race. Such a case demands the careful consideration ot the 
philosopher and jurist. 

How much the cause of justice and philosophy is indebted to 
the unwearied perseverance of the eminent advocate who with- 
stood the tide of popular indignation in conducting the pri- 
soner's defence, is left for other hands to register ; but true it is, 
that over prejudice and ignorance, science has gloriously 
triumphed. — Jim. Jour. Med. Science. 

Remarkable case of Suicide, and Extraction of a Needle 
from the substance of the Heart. By J. G. Graves. — On 
Sunday, the 16th of August last, one of the most desperate acts 
of self-destruction was committed by a young man, aged 23 
years, in Nashua, N. H. The young man had been slightly 
indisposed for a day or two previous to the act, and confined to 
his room. He requested his father, who was sitting near him, 
to leave the room, as he wished to get some sleep. He left the 
room for a short time, and on returning, found his son deluged 
in blood, with his throat cut most shockingly. I was soon in 
attendance — found the patient nearly lifeless, with three exten- 
sive cuts across the neck. The cuts were through the hyoid, 
and between the thyroid and cricoid cartilages, severing entirely 
the larynx. On the left side, over and along the course of the 
fifth rib, there was an extensive cut down to the rib. During 
the haemorrhage, the trachea had become nearly filled with 
blood, rendering his breathing extremely difficult. I turned 
him over upon the side, when he quackled, and with a convul- 
sive effort threw out a large quantity of blood from the trachea. 
I secured the bleeding vessels, dressed the wound, and left the 
house, with orders to give the patient brandy and water. After 
the lapse of two hours, or more, the messenger came again, 
saying that the patient had roused and wished to see me imme- 
diately. On my entering the patient's room, he said, iC Doctor, 
I have got a darning-needle in my heart." I inquired how the 
needle came in his heart. His reply was, that he put the needle 
into his side previous to using the razor — that he feared the 


needle was not going to make sure work, &c. He placed his 
finger upon the spot where he said he put the needle, which 
was just between the fifth and sixth ribs. At this point there 
was a puncture in the skin, like the puncture of a pin or needle. 
He at this time had the appearance of great suffering — his pulse 
rapid and strong — his breathing extremely difficult — every 
breath attended with a screech. From his own statements, and 
the attending symptoms in the case, I was of the opinion that 
there was something in his side or heart, and that I should be 
justified in making an effort to extract it. I accordingly made 
an incision between the fifth and sixth ribs, clown to the intercos- 
tal muscles and made my dissection laterally, but could not find 
any trace of the needle. My next step was to cut down to the 
pleura, which I did by dissecting up the intercostal muscles. I 
now placed my finger on the pleura and pressed gently down, 
when I thought I felt a sharp point come in contact with my 
finger with every pulse of the heart. I now made my third 
incision through the pleura. It was now that I had a sight of 
the needle. By dilating the wound w th-the aid of retractors, 
I could distinctly see the heart act with the needle in it. With 
the aid of a pair of forceps, I extracted the needle, and it w 7 as 
followed with a forcible stream of blood. The patient soon be- 
came more quiet, breathing less difficult ; pulse less frequent ; 
slept some during the night. Second day, has no pain ; breath- 
ing easy ; pulse 90 ; sleeps well ; takes nourishment with much 
difficulty, on account of the division of the oesophagus. He 
continued to improve daily, up to the sixth day, when he was 
attacked with pleuritic pains, inability to swallow, and died on 
the eighth day after the needle was taken from the heart. 

Post-mortem Appearance. — Pleura slightly inflamed around 
the wound. On the inner surface of the pericardium there was 
a puncture, resembling a leech-bite, where the needle entered. 
The pericardium contained no blood, and the heart appeared 
natural. On opening into the left ventricle, we found where 
the needle entered this cavity. There was a small membranous 
sac, about as large as a pea, formed in the left ventricle, which 
contained pus. Nature, it seems, had set up a process by which 
to protect herself, by throwing around the needle this adven- 
tious membrane. — Jf. Y. Annalist. 

New method of procuring Insensibility under Operations. — 
Our inventive neighbours, the French, have contrived a new 
plan of procuring insensibility. M. Ducros is the surgeon who 


practises the method alluded to, and has communicated the re- 
sults of his experiments in several letters to the Academy of 
Sciences. The agent employed is the electro-magnetic cur- 
rent. Individuals who have been subjected to the current have 
been quite insensible to pricking or pinching at all parts of the 
body ; and teeth have been extracted without their knowledge. 

Dublin Med. Press. 

Professorship of Insanity. — We are gratified to learn that a 
Professorship of Insanity has been established at one Medical 
School. The Willoughby University, Columbus, Ohio, has 
appointed Samuel M. Smith, M. D., Professor of Medical Juris- 
prudence and Insanity. We think there should be a distinct 
course of Lectures on Mental Maladies, at every Medical School. 
Dr. Smith has some practical knowledge of Insanity, having 
been an Assistant Physician at the Ohio Lunatic Asylum for 
several years. — Amer. Jour, of Insanity. 

On the use of Ether and Perchloride of Formyle, or Chloro- 
form, in Surgical Operations. — We are indebted to Dr. S. G. 
Morton, for the following extract of a letter from Dr. James 
Suddards, of Philadelphia, dated Paris, December 1, 1847. — 
Medical Examiner. 

" In looking over the American papers a day or two since. I 
was somewhat surprised to read an article in the North Ameri- 
can of our city, on the use of ether in surgical operations. The 
paper was from a gentleman in Boston, and recounted two 
cases of amputation, in which etherization had been employed 
with success ; the wording, and indeed the whole tenor of his 
remarks, were such as to intimate rather an apology for a new 
discovery creeping into notice, than a description of what should 
now be considered an established therapeutical agent. It cer- 
tainly is a matter of astonishment that in the very spot where 
its application for these purposes was first suggested, the sur- 
geons and others, than whom there cannot be a more intelligent 
body in the world, should stand by, and doubtfully shake their 
heads, while the whole medical world of Europe should rise en 
masse, and loudly welcome the inventor as a benefactor of hu- 
manity. Is it not a shame to our country, and the profession, 
that we should calmly fold our hands before us, and allow our 
brethren in other parts of the world to reap the first fruits of a 
discovery which justly and rightly belongs to ourselves? To 


show the estimation in which it is held here, I need only men- 
tion that I have not seen a single operation during the whole 
five months of my residence, in which etherization was not 
employed, and always with complete success ; not an accident 
has happened, nor anything occurred to mar its happy effects. 
Indeed, so great is its reputation, that experiments have been 
made at the clinique of the faculty to see with what benefit it 
might be employed in labour; these operations I myself saw, 
and though they would scarcely justify an indiscriminate ap- 
plication, yet, as Dr. Smith of St. Bartholomew's, London, ob- 
serves, they were so far beneficial as to lead us to hope great 
advantages, and stimulate to still further trial, if we might per- 
chance lessen the pains of delivery, and do something for those 
who by nature and affection deserve so much at our hands. It 
would, indeed, be considered cruel to subject a patient to the 
pain of any operation, however trivial in itself, when its avoid- 
ance could be purchased at so cheap a rate. I trust that sur- 
geons in America have at last awakened to the benefits of an 
agent which has so long been waiting at their very doors, and 
are beginning, though late, to avail themselves of its happy 






Some account of Jonathan Johnstone, M. D. By E. J. Marsh, M. D. 169 

« " Lewis Johnstone, M. D. " " 170 

« " Robert M'Kean, M. D. " « 171 

Biographical Notice of Dr. Samuel Dick, by Quinton Gibbon, M. D. 173 

" " of William Forman M. D. by J. S. Schanck, 174 


Some account of an Endemic Fever among the coloured population 

of Philadelphia. By Silas S. Brooks, M. D. - - - - 176 

A case of Constipation successfully treated with Croton Oil. By 

Silas S. Brooks, M. D. - - - - - - - = 179 

Cases of Haemorrhage from the Umbilicus. By Elias J. Marsh M. D. 181 

History of Chloroform. By J. B. Warriner, M. D. - - - 182 

Clinical Observations — Singular Case of Swelling of the Neck. By 

the Editor, 187 

Case of Abscess near the axilla— terminating with profuse haemorr- 
hage. By the Editor, -*-.-... 190 

Fracture of the Cervix-Femoris — History of a Fatal Case, and its 
post-mortem appearances ; and of a case which terminated 
favorably. By N. W, Condit, M. D* - > - = =193 




The British and Foreign Chirurgical Review or Quarterly Journal 
of Medicine and Surgery, No. 1, January 1848, New York— re- 
published by Richard & George S. Wood, No. 261 Pearl street, 199 

The Nineteenth Annual Report of the Inspectors of the Eastern 
State Penitentiary of the State of Pennsylvania, transmitted to 
the Senate and House of Representatives, March 1848, - 203 

Report of the Pennsylvania Hospital for the Insane, for the year 
1847. By Thomas S. Kirkbride, M. D. Physician to the Insti- 
tution, - 205 

Principles and Practice of Surgery, by the late George M'Clellan, M. 
D. Edited by his son John H. B. M'Clellan, M. D. pp. 432— 
Philadelphia: Grigg, Elliott & Co. No. 14 North Fourth street, 208 

Summary of the Transactions of the College of Physicians of Phila- 
delphia from December 1847 to March 1848 inclusive, - 212 


Obituaht Notices — Death of Thomas T. Hewson, M. D. - - 216 

Death of Jacob Randolph, M. D. - - - 219 

Death of John S. Con diet, M. D. - - - 221 

Collodion, --.-------- 221 

The ensuing Annual Meeting, - 222 

Biographical Records, - 223 

A Monster, - - - - - = = - - - - . . 224 
Medical Intelligence — Delegates to the National Medical Asso- 
ciation from New Jersey, r - 224 
do do New York, - - - 225 
do do Massachusetts, - • 225 
do do Philadelphia, - - 226 
do do Ohio, - 226 
Pennsylvania Medical Convention, .... 226 
Medical Classes in Philadelphia, .... 226 

Pennsylvania Hospital, • 227 

Franklin Medical College, - - - = - . 227 

Successor to Liston, - - - - - - 227 

Faculty of Medicine of Paris, - - - . . 227 

Introductory Lectures, - - - - - - 227 

The Body of Dieffenbach, 227 

New Jersey Registration Bill, =-.. = = = 228 
Treatment of Typhus or Ship Fever, by John H. Griscom, M. D, 

of New York, = = = , = . = .= 230 


Observations on Etherization in Tetanus — with a case, read before 
the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, March 7, 1848. By 

Isaac Parrish, M. D. 233 

New and successful method of treating Prolapsus Ani. By Dr. Hate, 238 
A case of Eclampsia Parturientium, or Puerperal Convulsions. By 

Thomas M'Gown, M. D. of Hillsborough, Mi. 240 

The nature of General Shields' wound, 243 

Obituary Record — Death of Dr. Joseph Bell, ... - 244 

Amputation during spreading Gangrene, &c. By U, S. Thomas, M. 

D. of Longview, Tenn. 244 



New Jersey Medical Society, at New Brunswick, May 9th 
(Second Tuesday) at 10 o'clock A. M. 

District Medical Society of Burlington, at Mount Holly, May 
2, at 10 o'clock A. M. 

N.B. The Board of Censors will be in session at Mount Holly 
on the day of meeting. 



VOL. I. FOURTH MONTH, (APRIL,) 1843. No. S. 

There having been no meeting of the New Jersey Medical So- 
ciety since our last issue, we shall devote the space usually allot- 
ted to its transactions, to the following Biographical Notices. 


By E. J. Marsh, M. D. 

Mr. Editor — The design of publishing in the Reporter, notices 
of the History of our profession in this State, and Biographical 
sketches of the eminent men who have adorned and elevated it by 
their virtue and intelligence, will, I hope, be carried out. Your 
professional brethren in the different sections of the State, I trust, 
will assist you by collecting the scattered fragments of Medical 
History floating around them ; seizing upon the fading traditions 
of professional skill and eminence in their vicinity; noting down 
such personal recollections and professional anecdotes, as may 
come to their knowledge, and when leisure and materials serve, 
furnishing you with Memoirs adapted to your pages and purpose. 
Let us regard it as a sacred duty, due alike to the memories of 
our departed brethren, and to the honor and dignity of our pro- 
fession. In this spirit, I send you brief notices of several of the 
earliest Physicians of East Jersey 5 they are necessarily brief, 
from the very scanty materials in my possession, and for nearly 
all of which, I am indebted to the MS. notes of Mr. William A. 

Whitehead, Recording Secretarv of the New Jersey, Historical 


Society, to whose researches Jerseymen are indebted for mucb 
curious and valuable information relating to the early settlers and 
settlement of the State. 

John Johnstone, of Edinburgh, was among the first emigrants 
from Scotland to New Jersey, arriving in 1685. He appears to 
have resided at different times, both in New York and New Jer- 
sey ; but in 1721 took up his permanent residence in this state 9 
and established himself in the new city of Perth Amboy, which 
the fond imaginations of its founders promised would be the future 
metropolis of this Western world. " His profession," I quote 
from Mr. Whitehead, " in which he was considered skilful, gave 
Dr. Johnstone those opportunities which are best calculated to ex- 
hibit goodness of heart, where it is possessed, and his charity and 
estimable character earned for him a special notice by Smith* in 
his History, and on his death, the following obituary appeared in 
the Philadelphia Weekly Mercury. 

" Perth Amboy, September 19, 1732. On the 7th inst., died 
here in the 71st year of his age, Dr. John Johnstone, very much 
lamented by all who knew him, and to the inexpressible loss of 
the poor, who were always his particular care. 3 * James Alexan- 
der, writing to Governor Hunter, a warm friend and admirer of 
the Doctor, says " Dr. Johnstone died on the 7th inst., spent with 
age and fatigue in going about to serve those who needed his as- 

Dr. Johnstone was not only known to his contemporaries as an 
estimable man, and a skilful Physician, but also was esteemed for 
his civil services. He served as a member of the Provincial As- 
sembly for thirteen years, during ten of which he was Speaker 
of the House. He was also one of the Commissioners for set- 
tling the boundary between New York and New Jersey, and held 
at different times, other offices of trust and honor. 

Dr. Lewis Johnstone was the third son of the preceding *, he 
adopted the profession of his father, and as at that period there 

* Smith's History at p. 424, says " He was an early settler in East Jer- 
sey : 13 years member of Assembly, and ten of the time, Speaker: he went 
through several other important offices with reputation. In his practice as 
a Physician, he was knowing and useful, and did many charitable acts ; 
for the poor were generally the objects of his particular care."— Ed. 


were no facilities for acquiring a good literary or professional ed- 
ucation in this country, was sent abroad. He spent several years 
at Leyden, in Holland, at that time the chosen seat of learning 
and Medical Science, and whither youthful aspirants for the high- 
er honors of literature and philosophy, repaired from all quarters 
of the globe. Here he received the instructions of some of the 
first Medical Teachers of the age ; Booerhaave, the prince of 
modern Physicians, was still living ; Albinus filled the chair of 
Anatomy, and Gaubius taught Chemistry. Here he formed inti- 
macies and friendships with many of the distinguished scholars 
and physicians of the place, some of which he kept up by corres- 
pondence after his return home. Dr. Lewis Johnstone is said to 
have paid particular attention to the Flora of this country, and 
some interesting letters to him from Gronovius the Botanist, writ- 
ten in the years 1735, 6, 7, and 9, are in the possession of Mr. 
Whitehead. He established himself at Perth Amboy, and prac- 
tised there for many years, with the highest reputation for learn- 
ing and skill ; dying at an advanced age in 1773. 

Nee prosunt domino, quae prosunt omnibus, artes. Tradition 
reports, that Dr. Johnstone was haughty and austere in his deport- 
ment, very particular in his dress, and punctilious in his manners; 
careful to give emphasis to the t and e in his name, that he might 
not be confounded with the ordinary Jonsons of the day. 

Robert McKean is recorded in the Annals of the New Jersey 
Medical Society, as one of its founders, and its first President. 
In the year 1763, he was appointed by the Society for Propaga- 
ting the Gospel in Foreign Parts, Missionary to the city of Perth 
Amboy $ he accordingly took up his residence in that place, and 
acted both in the capacity of Physician and Clergyman. This 
union has the sanction of the high example of the Founder of our 
religion, who, while preaching the Gospel to the poor, also healed 
the sick ; and many Missionaries of recent times, have often found 
a knowledge of the Medical Art of great service to them, in the 
fulfilment of the duties of their higher and more important calling. 
The hours of sickness and sorrow, when the heart is softened, and 
the thoughts weaned for a time, from the world, afford the best 
opportunities for religious counsel and instruction. The Physi- 


cian will be admitted and listened to, when the Clergyman may 
be *hut out or repulsed. Although the wants and usages of esta- 
blished society require a division of the professions, and the best 
interests of each are promoted by such an arrangement, yet some 
knowledge of the Medical Art will often be found useful by the 
Clergyman, in his ministrations. The Physician, in his daily con- 
flicts with peevishness and pain, and disease, and misery ; in his 
frequent exposure to danger and death from contagion and infec- 
tion ; in his manifold trials of body, mind, and spirit, needs 
other support than earthly motives ; other consolations than world- 
ly gains 5 in a strong religious Faith, he has a support for himself, 
and a power which may often be most happily employed in con- 
trolling disease, or when the resources of his art fail, in cheering 
sufferers, by throwing the light of hope on the passage to the 
grave. Without strong religious convictions, the Physician, from 
witnessing so much of the ills of life, is apt to sink into the care- 
less, easy-tempered sensualist, or harden into the cold, scoffing 

Dr. McKean lived but a short time after the formation of the 
Society ; dying in 1767, at the age of 35 years, leaving behind 
him an excellent character in both the professions in which he 
was engaged. 

In the epitaph on his tomb-stone, erected by his brother, after- 
wards Governor of Pennsylvania, he is described as 

An unshaken friend ; 
An agreeable companion $ 
A rational Divine ; 
A skilful Physician, 
And in every relation of life* 
A truly benevolent and 
Honest man. 

A character which all traditionary accounts agree in represent- 
ing as no fraternal flattery, but just and true. While the mem- 
bers of our Society may congratulate themselves in having such a 
man for their first President, may they prove to the world that 
he is a fair representative of the character of the profession. 

Paterson, N. J., March, 1848. 




The subject of the following sketch, Dr. Samuel Dick, enjoyed 
during his life, a high reputation for professional skill and attain- 
ment in this community. His claims to our favorable notice as a 
scholar, a patriot, and a practical man in the every-day forms of 
business, were perhaps, surpassed by no individual of his time, in 
this, his adopted county. Dr. Dick was born November 14, 1740, 
in Nottingham township, Prince George county, Md. He was the 
son of the Rev. John Dick, Pastor of the Presbyterian Church in 
New Castle, Del. At an early age be commenced the study of 
the languages at the latter place, and under the tuition of Presi- 
dent Findley, Governor McKean, and the Rev. Dr. McWhorton, 
he became an accomplished Classical scholar. 

Of his Medical education I have learned nothing certain. But 
as it was obtained prior to the establishment of the University of 
Pennsylvania, it was most probably wholly acquired in the office 
of a neighboring Practitioner 5 the only mode then practicable for 
those whose means or inclination did not prompt them to visit 

Before the age of 21 years, he served as Surgeon's mate in 
General Wolfe's army, during the French war, and was present 
at the surrender of Quebec. Soon after the close of the French 
war he came to Salem county, and for some time taught a Classi- 
cal School in Penn's Neck. He afterwards removed to the town 
of Salem, and commenced the practice of Medicine, in which he 
continued, except when occupied in the discharge of his numer- 
ous official and political duties, until a few years before his death. 
Here his Surgical experience, gained while in the army, soon ac- 
quired for him a superior reputation for professional skill. His 
professional life was, however, frequently interrupted by the stir- 
ring events of the times. He took an active part in the struggle 
for our National Independence, and held several offices of trust 
and responsibility, during that trying period. 

He was a member of the Provincial Congress of New Jersey, 
in 1776, and one of the Committee appointed by that body to 
draft the Old Constitution of the State. He was also commission- 


ed by the same Congress, as Colonel of the State Militia ; in 
which capacity he was for a short time in active service.* He 
afterwards served as a member of the Continental Congress, for 
the years 1783, '84 and '85. In 1780 he was appointed Surrogate 
of Salem County, by Governor Livingston, who highly esteemed 
him, both as an officer and a man. He discharged the duties of 
the latter office for a period of 22 years. He died November 16, 
1812, aged 72 years. 

Dr. Dick may be cited as one among the many examples afford- 
ed by the Medical Profession of men, whose patriotism has prompt- 
ed them to make large sacrifices of their time and comfort, in the 
service of their country. The friend and contemporary of the 
venerable Elmer, like him, he sustained his country in the time 
of her greatest peril, and at all times remained a firm friend to 
her best interests. Like him also, in the latter period of his life, 
he found pleasure in reviewing his early Classical studies; an ex- 
ample worthy of imitation by his brethren of the present day. 

Salem, N. J., March 3, 1848. 


The following obituary notice of the late William Forman, M.D. 
of Princeton, has been furnished us by J. S. Schanck, M.D., who 
attended him in his last illness. We can freely add our testimo- 
ny to the worth of Dr. Forman; though our acquaintance with him 
was of short duration, it was such as to make us feel that in him 
we had a friend. He not only enjoyed the confidence and esteem 
of the community where he resided, but we believe of the mem- 
bers of the profession by whom he was known. He was an active 
member of the Medical Society of New Jersey, and served as its 
President in 1833, and subsequently as a member of the Stand- 
ing Committee in 1837 and '38. Some of Dr. Forman's views of 

* An anecdote characteristic of the times, is related of him at this period, 
by an eye witness. While the British regiments were retreating, after the 
battle of Princeton, some ladies, assembled in a house near by, came out 
upon the porch to witness the scene ; while there, a random shot so shat- 
ered the leg of one of the party that amputation was judged necessary — 
Col. Dick immediately assumed his office of Surgeon, and amputated the 


the pathology and treatment of disease were peculiar. He was 
much interested in the study and management of the diseases of 
females; and the resolutions which he presented to the State So- 
ciety in 1846, testify to the zeal which he manifested in searching 
out the original cause of many obstinate and often incurable ma- 
ladies, growing out of the Scrofulous diathesis. He was of opin- 
ion that Scrofula, and many Spinal diseases had their foundation in 
a syphylitic taint, existing in the ancestry of those who are afflict- 
ed with them : his Resolutions contemplated a premium of one 
hundred dollars for the best Essay on the subject, to be written 
either in the English, Latin, or French language. 

" Died in Princeton, N. J., Feb. 22, 1848, Dr. William Forman, 
aged 51 years and 6 months. 

Deceased was a native of New Jersey. He early commenced 
the study of Medicine with Dr. George Holcombe, of Allentown, 
Monmouth county ; attended the public instruction of the Uni- 
versity of Pennsylvania, and afterwards of the College of Physi- 
cians and Surgeons, of New York, and graduated at the latter 
Institution, in 1819. 

After practicing his profession for 5 years, in Lancaster coun- 
ty, Pa., he returned to his native cownty, and settled in Allen- 
town, where he continued in the acceptable and successful dis- 
charge of his professional duties till 1836, when he removed to 
Princeton. Of his career here, (as a biographical sketch is ex- 
pected from another) it is sufficient at present to say, he had the 
entire confidence of many of our most intelligent and best citi- 
zens. Those who knew him best loved him most, and those who 
most trusted, were best satisfied with his skill, judgment, and at- 

Enfeebled by a pulmonary affection, an attack of typhoid fever, 
with a copious intestinal hemorrhage, proved more than he could 
bear. He expired a week after the same disease had cut oft* his 
only son. 

To a friend, during his sickness, he expressed his faith in the 
doctrines of the Bible, and added, if it should please God to re- 
store him to health, it was his deliberate determination, publicly 
to proclaim his faith by a union with the people of God." 




By Silas S. Brooks, M. D. 

In the capacity of Physician to one of the Charitable Institu- 
tions of our city, I have witnessed during the past winter, an en- 
demic fever which prevailed to a considerable extent among the 
most degraded portion of our colored population, residing princi- 
pally in the narrow streets and courts of Moyamensing. 

The greatest number of cases occurred in the early part of the 
season, and were the most malignant and rapid in their progress. 
At present few cases are met with, and these are commonly mild, 
and terminate favorably. 

During a period of four months and a half, I saw 53 cases, 14 of 
which terminated fatally. Its general type was similar to that of 
typhus, attended with great hepatic derangement. 

The premonitory symptoms were similar to those marking a 
case of common bilious derangement, succeeded in a few days, 
by considerable febrile excitement ; and this, after a longer or 
shorter time, by general prostration. In fatal cases this was fol- 
lowed by coma, involuntary stools, &c. which usually terminated 
in death on the 5th or 12th day. 

There was generally more or less abdominal tenderness, espe- 
cially over the epigastric region ; and in many, great pain was 
felt in this region. Throughout the whole muscular system, much 
complaint was made of soreness, and in many instances of pain. 
The bowels were generally constipated ; yet in many they were 
preternaturally loose, and attended with vomiting. Urine scanty 
and highly colored. The skin was unusually moist at the begin- 
ing, cool and dry in the latter stages. The pulse at first, was 


from 80 to 100 per minute, but in fatal cases it often became as 
high as 140. Headache was common, and sometimes intense. 
The tongue, in the early stage of the disease, was moist, and cov- 
ered by a white, thick, and pasty furr ; afterwards it became 
brown, dry, swollen and tremulous ; and was with difficulty pro- 
truded. Thirst was excessive. Conjunctiva in most cases very de- 
cidedly yellow. Mental derangement frequently occurred, which 
sometimes amounted to wild and furious delirium ; morbid vigi- 
lance was common. The coma, and prostration, with involunta- 
ry stools, always proved grave symptoms. 

Only one post mortem examination was made by myself, and 
that was of a boy 7 years old. No lesion was detected ; but in 
the small intestines thirty-eight lunibricoides were found, mostly 
of full grown size, and some were at least ten inches in length. 
When the treatment was commenced within the first few days, it 
was generally successful. The most efficient agents at any stage, 
appeared to be the blue mass, castor oil, and quinia. Dover's 
powder or opium, was often combined with the blue mass, on 
account of the abdominal pain, nausea, and vomiting. As adju- 
vants and palliatives, sinapisms, cold ablutions, warm fomenta- 
tions, &c, were employed. As a general rule, the prostration, 
dry and brown tongue, sordes, and other symptoms that mark a 
grave case of typhus, did not supervene where the above remedies 
were early and freely used. 

The first aivine dejections after the administration of the medi- 
cine, were thin, and of a light color ; but after four or five doses 
of the blue mass and oil, they became dark — almost black, and of 
greater consistence. From this moment, improvement generally 
became evident, and a speedy convalescence ensued. It appear- 
ed as if there had been an accumulation of foecal matter in the 
alimentary canal, which acted as a local irritant — an incubus, that 
held the patient down ; and so soon as it could be removed, the 
oppression ceased, and health and strength returned. The treat- 
ment was unsuccessful when the patient became in the least 
comatose, with prostration and great abdominal pain ; notwith- 
standing recourse was had to cups and blisters, freely applied, 
over the seat of local congestion, and to wine, quinia, carbonate 

of ammonia, internally administered. Bleeding from the arm was 


practised several times during the prevalence of the fever ; but 
in general, its effect was to hasten the stage of prostration and its 
accompaniments. This complaint seemed to commence with the 
cold weather of last fall, from the same causes apparently, that 
produce typhus fever; viz : want, and hardships of all kinds, ne- 
glect of cleanliness, impure air, &c. 

It is well known that these people are peculiarly sensible to 
the influence of cold ; and they are found thrown together in 
small and illy-ventilated apartments, with but little fire, and pro- 
visions the most scanty and poor. Their bedding consists in 
many instances, of almost nothing; rags, old and filthy carpeting, 
worn out clothing, and such like, thrown upon the floor of a garret, 
and sometimes upon the ground of the cellar. Their clothing is 
of course, insufficient, and their habits altogether loathsome, and 
calculated to engender disease. The only occupation of many of 
them is, what they call "ragging and boneing." Numbers of them 
are seen daily, picking from the gutters and sewers of the city, 
such fragments of clothing, and bones, as they may find, which 
serve to make up their wardrobes and supply their tables. The 
marvel is, that there is not more disease and mortality among 

The principal Physician to the Alms House, Dr. Benedict, ap- 
pears to think the fever different from the ship or typhus of the 
emigrants, and is rather inclined to look for some local miasm 
as the cause. He says, that about two hundred and fifty cases 
have been brought to his notice at the Alms House, and that the 
greatest number came from a comparatively small locality, viz : 
that bounded by Delaware Fifth and Eighth streets, South and 
Fitzwater streets. The ground in this location is rather low, 
when compared with many other parts of the city, and is the very 
spot on which is found the greatest amount of degradation and 
wretchedness among the colored population. 

Drs. Dunott and Ashton, each of whom had about the same 
number of cases as myself, give their testimony in favor of its 
being intimately connected with the ship fever of last summer; 
that it is the ship fever, modified by the peculiar habits and con- 
stitutions of the colored race. Indeed, Dr. Ashton informs me 
of several cases of ship fever that occurred in his practice last 


summer, that strongly resembled the phenomena developed by the 
subsequent disease among this people. 

The whole number of cases, so far as I can learn from various 
sources, was about live hundred. There appears great uniformity 
of testimony as to location of most of the cases — that mentioned 
by Dr. Benedict. The mortality, with my friends above named, 
does not appear to have been quite so great as my own 5 this I 
attribute to their having had a better class of patients, and of 
course better nursing. At the Alms House, several post mortem 
examinations were made, but there was, in general, no particu- 
lar or uniform lesion found. The solid viscera of the abdomen 
were frequently enlarged, or changed in structure. 

Philadelphia, 1848. 



By Silas S. Brooks, M. D. 

Lucy — , aged 32 years; sent for the author at about 

3 o'clock in the afternoon, of the 23d of 1st Month last — com- 
plained of pains, as she expressed it, "all over," and especially 
in the back ; also nausea and occasional vomiting. Pulse was 
83 per minute, and nearly natural in force and volume. Had 
considerable thirst, the tongue brown and slightly furred, the 
temperature of the skin nearly natural, but dry, some cough, a 
little soreness on pressure upon the parietes of the thorax, and 
great epigastric tenderness. Was restless and dispirited. The 
bowels had not been evacuated for a number of days, and when 
last open, were quite loose ; yet nothing was done to check their 
action. Had taken several doses of salts, castor oil, injections, 
&c, without effect Prescribed four drops of croton oil, made 


into four pills with crumbs of bread ; one to be taken hourly, till 
they operate. 

24th, 9 o'clock, A.M. No evacuation of the bowels, pains in- 
creased, was restless during the night. Prescribed two scruples 
of calomel, combined with two grains of opium, to be divided in 
equal parts, and taken, with an interval of two hours between 
them. At noon, the same day, no discharge had occurred ; the 
pain somewhat relieved, otherwise about the same. Prescribed 
two ounces of epsom salts, with one of senna, to a pint of water; 
and directed a teacupful of the infusion to be taken every two 
hours. Also, large domestic enemata to be administered every 
two hours. 

6 o'clock, P. M. Same as at noon ; the first two doses of salts 
and senna were retained, but the subsequent ones were rejected. 
The enemata quickly came away, nearly unchanged in appear- 
ance. Pulse slightly quickened. Examined, to ascertain the 
presence of hernia, but none was found, nor any other cause to 
prevent the operation of the medicine. Ordered thirty grains of 
calomel in three powders, one to be taken every hour, also the 
warm hip bath. 

25th, A. M. In the course of the night, a light colored mu- 
cous and watery discharge had occurred from the bowels, to the 
amount of aboat ten ounces, which seemed to afford partial re- 
lief. As she appeared very comfortable, it was thought best to 
trust to, and watch nature a short time. 

5 o'clock, P. M. No more evacuations, the pains began to re- 
turn, prostration to supervene, the pulse to quicken, and the 
mouth to exhibit signs of a mercurial influence. Ordered eight 
drops of croton oil in pills of one drop each ; one to be taken 
every hour till they operate. Large flannel cloths to be wrung 
from hot water and laid around her body and extremities, and 
renewed once or twice as they became cool. 

26th, A. M. Very much better ; had three copious alvine dis- 
charges of a foecal character, mixed with a good deal of mucous. 
Took five of the pills before the bowels moved, which was not till 
after midnight. Pulse was soft, slow, and weak, and she had 
some appetite. From this time she improved rapidly, and soon 
recovered her usual health. 


Thus, nine drops of croton oil, seventy grains of calomel, two 
ounces of salts, and one of senna, were taken, and several in- 
jections, the warm bath, fomentations, &c, were employed, be- 
fore relief was obtained. Of these agents, I believe croton oil to 
have been the most efficacious. 

Philadelphia, 1848. 

By Elias J. Marsh, M. D. 

In the course of my practice, I have met with two fatal cases, 
and several very slight ones, of a disease not usually noticed in 
the books of practice which have fallen under my notice. The 
disease is haemorrhage from the umbilicus, after the separation of 
the cord. In the fatal cases of which I speak, compression, astrin- 
gents, and escharotics were employed, but to no good purpose ; in 
one case, the twisted suture was used by a physician, but with the 
same result. Local applications, mild and severe, appeared to 
have no control over the haemorrhage. In these cases, the skin 
and conjunctiva assumed a deep icteric hue ; it was not the usual 
icterus mcntarum, which probably depends upon some change in 
the condition of the blood in the cutaneous capillaries, but a true 

I attribute the disease to some obstruction in the liver, which 
prevents the normal circulation of the blood throughout that vis- 
cus, and forces that fluid in a refluent course through the unob- 
Iiterated umbilical vessels. Acting upon these pathological views, 
in one or two slight cases of similar haemorrhage, I have adopted 
the practice of free purging, with apparent good effect ; whether 
it would answer in the severer forms of the disease, I cannot say, 
but it may be worth the trial, as local applications are entirely 
useless. As the disease appears to be of rare occurrence, I have 
thought that this brief notice may not be without interest to some 
of your readers. 

Paterson, March, 1848. 


By J. B. Warriner, M. D. 

"Honor to whom honor is due." 

As some have given credence to the belief that this substance 
is a recent discovery, I have thought that perhaps a short history 
of it might be interesting to some of your readers. 

All that can be claimed as new about it, is its use for annulling 
pain in surgical operations. Without deciding positively, who 
was the first discoverer of this interesting agent, allow me to ex- 
tract a few paragraphs from an article published in Silliman's 
Journal of Science for 1832, and written by Samuel Guthrie, of 
Sackett's Harbor, N. Y., then a young man, and self taught, who 
certainly deserves the credit of contributing to the discovery of 
the present improved mode of preparing the article. But, before 
I proceed, I will quote from Silliman's Elements of Chemistry, 
the passage which Mr. Guthrie says, first directed his attention to 
the subject, it is as follows : Article on Chloric Ether, (as it was 
then called.) 

" Properties. — Resembles an oil ; color yellowish, but white 
when purified ; sinks in water in distinct globules, which readily 
run together. Specific gravity at 45° 1. 22. By much agitation, is 
diffused in the water and partially dissolved, imparting to the 
water its own peculiar taste, which is sweetish, aromatic, and 
agreeable. Taken internally, it is stimulating and reviving. 

'* This ether is usually formed by mingling equal volumes of 
Chlorine and Olefiant Gas, both of which are speedily condensed 
into the fluid form, but the process is troublesome, as only a 
small volume of fluid is obtained from a large volume of the 

" I have suggested that it might prove a valuable medicine." 
" I am not aware, however, that this trial had been any where 
made, and probably the subject would have still slumbered, had 
it not been for the very ingenious, and as far as I know, the origi- 
nal process of Mr. Guthrie." (Professor Silliman, 1832.) 

Mr. Guthrie directs as follows: 

" Into a clean copper still, put three pounds of chloride of lime, 
and two gallons of well flavored alcohol, specific gravity .844, and 


distil. If more chloride of lime be used, the etherial product 

will be increased; nor is it necessary that the proof of the spirits 
should be very high, but I have commonly used the above propor- 
tions and proof, and have every reason to be satisfied with them. 

By re-distilling from carbonate of potash, the product is 

concentrated and refined." 

" This ether may be entirely, or very nearly so, separated from 
alcohol, by repeated rectifications from muriate of lime ; (chloride 
of calcium) it may thus be brought to the specific gravity of 1. 44, 
but I have found no agent for that purpose, comparable with strong 
sulphuric acid. Distilled oft' sulphuric acid, it has a specific 
gravity of 1.486, or a little greater, and may then be regarded as 
free from alcohol ; and if a little sulphuric acid, which sometimes 
contaminates it, be removed by washing it with a strong solution 
of carbonate of potash, it may then be regarded as absolutely pure. 
In this state it boils at 160°, has a specific gravity of 1.486 ; at 
60° is extremely volatile, diffuses upon the tongue and fauces, a 
powerful ethereal odor, and excites to an intense degree, its pecu- 
liar scent and aromatic taste." 

Let me here give Prof. Simpson's receipt for preparing the 


Take 261bs. 9oz. 4dr. 20grs. of chloride of lime, dilute it care- 
fully with I60lbs. 9oz. 2dr. of water,fill a brass still up to two- 
thirds only, with the calcareous milk which results from this com- 
bination ; add 5lbs. 4oz. 2dr. of alcohol — distil. The product is 
chloroform mixed with alcohol and tainted with a little chlorine. 
The chloroform is separated by decantation, and washed with 
water, then with a weak solution of carbonate of potass. : add 
chloride of calcium (muriate of lime,) and distil by means of a 
water bath. M. Sonberian thinks that for medical use, it is su- 
perfluous to rectify anew, by sulphuric acid. We can here see 
that the two processes only differ by the addition of water to the 
chloride of lime, before adding the alchol They both make the 
same product. It is chloroform which results from either. 

Mr. Gurthrie adds : 

" During the last six months, a great number of persons have 
drunk of this ether in my laboratory, not only very freely, but 
frequently to the point of intoxication ; and so far as I have ob- 
served, it has appeared to be singularly grateful both to the palate 
and stomach, producing promptly, a lively flow of animal spirits 
and consequent loquacity ; and leaving after its operation, little 
of that depression consequent on the use of ardent spirits. 

" From the invariably agreeable effects of it on persons in health, 
and the deliciousness of its flavor, it would seem to promise much 
as a remedy in cases requiring a safe, quick, energetic, and palat- 
able stimulus. For drinking, it requires an equal bulk of water." 


Mr. Guthrie sent a quantity of this ether to Prof. Eli Ives, 
of" New Haven, that he might test its virtue as a remedial agent. 
Also, to Dr. Nathan B. Ives, the Professor's son. 

The following is Prof. Eli Ives's statement. 

«* Dear Sir — I have witnessed the effect of the ether with which 
you were so kind as to furnish me, and in some instances where 
you had furnished individuals who wished to try its effect. I have 
given it to a female sixty years of age, who had been subject to 
severe paroxysms of pain in the chest, and difficulty of breathing, 
called asthma. The paroxysm for which I gave the ether, was 
thought more severe than any she had had before ; she took the 
remedies as she had ordinarily taken them, previous to the use of 
the ether, without very obvious effect. The ether was given in 
doses of half a teaspoonful, once in two hours, for twelve hours. 
It was given in the course of the night, and in the morning the 
patient was very much relieved ; more suddenly than she had been 
in any previous illness of the kind. The patient and the friends, 
attributed the speedy and effectual relief to the ether. It appear- 
ed to me, that the ether was the efficient article that had produced 
the relief. 

"Mr. D. W. with pulmonic disease, has inhaled the ether to ob- 
viate general debility and difficult respiration. The article has 
been effectual to obviate those symptoms ; its immediate effect, 
besides giving relief, is that of giving a pleasant sensation. I have 
given the ether to children in the ulcerated sore throat. A child 
of Mr. P. was attacked with ulcerated sore throat (called scarlet 
fever; Rosalia of Dr. Good;) this child died on the fifth day. This 
child took no ether, indeed, it was so deranged that it was diffi- 
cult to administer any medicines. A brother of the same child, 
attacked with similar disease, had deep ulcers in the throat, and 
high fever, with derangement. The ether was given every two 
hours, in doses of thirty drops, diluted with an ounce of water ; 
the child was at all times ready to take this medicine, and it was 
continued until the fever abated. The child began to mend after 
the fifth day. The ether was thought to allay the irritation in the 
nervous system, abate the heat of the skin, and to have a good ef- 
fect upon the ulcers in the throat. This patient recovered very 

"I have given the ether in several other cases of scarlet fever, 
in cases of adults, giving it in doses of a teaspoonful, diluted with 
water. I have been pleased with the operation of this ether ; it 
is diffusible in its action, like the other ethers, and has this advan- 
tage over them, that it is always grateful. I have known no child 
refuse it. Yours &c. 

E. IVES." 
January 2d, 1832. 


N. B. " The last vial you furnished me, I gave to a female fifty 
years of age who has been affected with paroxysms of asthma for 
more than twenty years. I have seen the patient but once since 
the medicine was given, when she was evidently better, and said 
she thought the medicine had done her good. I have used the 
ether for spasmodic cough, and am so much satisfied with the 
beneficial effect of the remedy in such cases, that I shall use it 
more extensively as soon as I shall be able to furnish myself with 
a quantity of it. E. I." 

Statement of Dp. N. B. Ives. 

" Dear Sir — I have been much pleased with the effects of the 
" chloric ether" with which I was favored through your kindness. 
The first case in which I administered it, was in that of Mr. Cof- 
fing, who was severely ill with atonic quinsey — he was unable to 
swallow. The ether was injected by means of a syringe, with the 
happiest effect. After using the syringe he was able to swallow, 
and took the same article internally, with benefit. I have also 
witnessed its beneficial effect in pneumonic cases. 

Respectfully yours, 

Nathan B. Ives." 

By the above extract we perceive that this very chloroform was 
made by a young man at Sackett's Harbor, N. Y., and used by 
Prof. Ives in New Haven sixteen years ago, and what seems re- 
markable, it was made by so similar a process. The report of the 
Drs. Ives corroborates what I have seen in the few trials I have 
known, of it being used as an internal remedy. I have taken it 
but once in my own case, and that was for sick headache. I took 
fifteen drops in some water which relieved my head at once: also 
in one case of dismenorrhea, it seemed to relieve the pain speedi- 
ly. The patient was subject to very severe pain during every 
return of her menses, and generally took camphor to relieve it; 
but she expressed herself as being more speedily and effectually 
relieved by the ether, than ever she had been by the camphor. 

Her case was called by her physician, a neuralgia of the uterus. 



Mr. Guthrie writes, dated May 8, 1831. "One year ago, I dis- 
covered a process by which much resin was abstracted from oil of 
turpentine after it had been re-distilled from water. The oil of 
turpentine I send you is pine, or nearly so, and is I think, an ar- 
ticle of considerable importance. It dissolves singly caoutchouc, 
and the solution dries rapidly, and does not continue sticky like 
the solution made with common oil of turpentine. Mixed with 
alcohol, it burns in a lamp without leaving small resinous points 
upon the wick, or causing those scintillations observable in the 
flame when common oil of turpentine is used." 

This is the compound now used as burning fluid; it has been 
called patent; three years ago it was thought to be a recent dis- 
covery, but by the above extract from Silliman's Journal, it will 
be perceived that Mr. Guthrie prepared and used the article 
eighteen years since. 

Mr. Guthrie tells of two processes which he has made use of 
for purifying oil of turpentine, as follows, " Take sulphuric acid 
and water, equal weight, mix, and when cold add a quantity of it 
to a quantity of oil of turpentine, and agitate thoroughly : let the 
acid subside, and decant the clear spirits. Repeat the operation 
until the acid subsides without being discolored. The oil of tur- 
pentine thus prepared, (with warmth and a strong solar light) is, 
as I believe, a perfect solvent of caoutchouc. This process is 
somewhat troublesome and expensive, and after a great number of 
fruitless trials with various articles, I found that the alkalies and 
alkaline earths, especially lime, would attack resin, but not pure 
oil of turpentine. On distilling oil of turpentine from caustic 
lime and water, I found a great deal of resin remaining in the 
still. I likewise found by the sulphuric acid test, that the oil was 
pure : hence, the resin was an adventitious body." 

Thus we can learn from the twenty-first volume of Silliman's 
Journal, that Mr. Guthrie made camphine eighteen years ago, as 
well as burning fluid. 

I do not know why chloroform was not more used as a remedial 
agent, unless the great expense of procuring it prohibited, at the 
time Prof. Ives used it. It would seem to promise much, as being 
one among the nervous stimulants of the materia medica ; at the 
same time one of the most agreeable. 

Burlington, April 1848. 



By the Editor. 

singular case of swelling of the neck. 

J. A., a gentleman of robust constitution, aged forty-two, had 
four teeth tilled by a dentist in Philadelphia. On his return home 
the following day, he exposed himself imprudently to the cold, 
pursued his business as usual, and at night was seized with chilli- 
ness and stift'-neck. On the second day following, I was sum- 
moned to visit him. Found the whole anterior portion of the neck 
considerably swelled, indurated, and somewhat tender upon pres- 
sure. The tumor occupied a space from the chin to the sternum, 
and extended laterally on the upper portion, to within about an 
inch of the angle of the inferior maxillary bone, forming an irregu- 
lar triangle with its apex at the upper part of the sternum. When 
exposed to view, my first impression was that it was a Bron- 
chocele, but the history of the case, convinced me that it could 
not be so. The thyroid, the sub-maxillary, and the sub-lingual 
glands were all extensively tumefied — so that the patient could 
not portrude his tongue beyond his teeth — spoke indistinctly, 
and experienced difficulty in deglutition. A saline cathartic 
was immediately prepared, which, after much eftbrt was swal- 
lowed. Forty leeches were applied to the swelling, and followed 
by a plaster of Cantharides. The blister was dressed with 
warm poultices, and discharged very freely. It was followed by 
some abatement of the pain, but there continued a great degree of 
tension of the muscles and integuments; and every attempt to 
swallow was attended with much suffering. The Cathartic ope- 
rated freely upon the bowels, and was repeated when necessary, 
in the subsequent treatment of the case. The blistered surface 
healed in a few days, the plaster of Cantharides was re applied, 
and warm bread and milk poultices continued as before. This 
treatment was persevered in for ten days; the difficulty in swal- 
lowing not being in the least diminished until the tenth dav, 
when a copious discharge occurred internally, from the middle 
portion of the tumour, which, of course admitted a freer passage 


into the stomach. Up to this period, the patient was unable to 
lie down, owing to the pressure and weight of the diseased por- 
tion upon the trachea. He sat most of the time in his easy chair, 
and could only swallow thin liquids. His breath being offensive, 
and mouth very unpleasant to himself, a cleansing gargle was re- 
commended. To use this he would fill the mouth, stand up, hold 
fast to the bed post, and with the utmost exertion, was enabled to 
wash out the mouth and pharynx. On the twelfth day, a copious 
evacuation of muco-purulent matter issued from one side of the 
mouth; as nearly as I could ascertain, frpm the excretory duct, 
(Whorton's) communicating with the sub-maxillary gland; and on 
the following day, a similar discharge occurred on the opposite 
side. There still remained, however, a good deal of tenderness^ 
and the poultices were continued, with a view of keeping up the 
suppurative process, until entire relief should be obtained. Of 
course, the discharges were followed by much relief, and di- 
minution of the swelling. Three weeks passed by, and the 
patient became impatient to resume his business — though there 
still existed a slight induration of the parts around the walls 
of the trachea, and particularly in front. There was also a dis- 
agreeable traction of the muscles in every effort at deglutition. 
This was very readily seen when the neck was uncovered, par- 
ticularly in the action of the depressers of the os-hyoides, and 
larynx. The patient was now directed to annoint the part with 
ung: Iodin: comp; diluted with lard. He could not endure how- 
ever, more than two or three applications, and he preferred look- 
ing after his business, keeping his neck well protected with a 
scarf, and annointing occasionally with opedeldoc. In a week 
after this, I was called to see him again— the soreness and swell- 
ing had increased, and the parts were very much indurated. 
Some cotton was now wet with equal portions of Granville's lo- 
tion and whiskey, and applied to the part, with a view of exciting 
speedy counter irritation. In a few minutes the skin was very 
much reddened, and in one or two places vesication had occurred., 
Warm bread and water, and bread and milk poultices were con- 
tinued, and there were evident marks of suppuration apparent in 
a few days. The tumor soon began to point, just in front of the 
larynx, and in a few days more, was opened with an abscess lancet. 
The discharge was profuse, and gave immediate relief. It was> 


kept up for several days, and the opening healed. The suppura- 
tive process continued, and a discharge again occurred, without 
the use of the lancet. The surrounding induration yielded, and 
the patient convalesced rapidly. He is now able to go out and 
pursue his business. The constitution of course suffered in some 
degree, from the demand made upon it to carry on the suppura- 
tive inflammation, while the avenue from which it derives its sup- 
plies was obstructed, and the patient lost several pounds in weight. 
The pulse, during the attack, was irritable and feeble; the al- 
vine evacuations mostly regular, and natural in appearance, and 
the appetite usually good. Animal broth and other nourishing 
liquids were allowed; but the pain attendant upon deglutition pre- 
vented their free employment. The disease was supposed to be 
purely local in its origin, and was treated as such. The general 
system showing no marks of disturbance until the local symptoms, 
had become developed. What has rendered this case a peculiar 
one, seems to me to be the fact of its sudden approach and rapid 
progress. Some surgical writers notice a disease called hydro- 
bronchocele, or hydrocele of the neck, which is described as an 
encysted tumor, gradual in its formation, involving the thyroid 
body, and the surrounding parts. It is cured in the same manner 
as hydrocele of the scrotum, by puncture and stimulating injec- 
tions into its cavity. In the instance described, the tumor in- 
creased in forty-eight hours, to a degree sufficient to interfere 
with the normal functions of the parts it involved, soon gave evi- 
dence of fluctuation, and discharge from three distinct openings 
during the first attack, and subsequently during the relapse, sup- 
purated again, and was evacuated externally. Up to the time 
when the patient returned from Philadelphia, and felt a stiff" neck 
and chilliness on the evening of the same day, he had never had 
any swelling of the neck, or disease of the throat, having uniform- 
ly enjoyed good health for a series of years. About a year since, 
I saw a case of hydro-bronchocele under the care of a physician 
in an adjoining neighborhood, which was " tapped," and I believe 
finally cured by puncture and injection. Its appearance was very 
different from the one described above. It was a distinct, circum- 
scribed regular tumor, and involved principally the region of the 
thyroid gland; neither did it materially interfere with deglutition 
or respiration. 




I was requested to see a little girl four years old, with pain in 
her left arm. The upper third of the arm was very tender upon 
pressure, but without any external evidence of inflammation. Upon* 
taking hold of the limb and attempting to move it* the child 
would scream vehemently. The arm was held near to the side y 
the fore-arm thrown across the epigastrum, and the shoulder de- 
pressed, as in fracture of the collar bone. I could discover no 
evidence of fracture or dislocation. Rest and saturnine lotions 
were ordered. In three or four days a little redness appeared 
about an inch and a half below the axilla, under the arm. Poul- 
tices were directed — the child became pale and wan— -laid in its 
cradle and took but little nourishment. The whole of the upper 
part of the limb became inflamed, and at the point where the first 
red spot appeared it began to soften: fluctuation was very appa- 
rent, and I was urged by the mother to open it. This I declined 
doing, without assigning any reason, and indeed, without having 
any, except a disinclination to do so. Soon after leaving the 
house I began to reflect whether I should not have done so, know- 
ing that it would be followed by relief to my little patient. I 
hesitated, and was almost ready to turn back, to comply with the 
reasonable request of the mother. On my visit the next mornings 
the mother accosted me thus: «• Doctor, you must lance this place, 
indeed you must." It was examined thoroughly, and was evident- 
ly fit to open. I had left my case at home, and could not do it. 
The child suffered intensely, and the mother had been nearly worn 
out with twelve days of watching and anxiety. The poultices 
were continued, anodynes were administered, and nourishing food 
directed. In the afternoon I was sent for in great haste. Not 
being at home at the time, I did not receive the message for an 
hour after it was left. On my return I went to the little sufferer; 
she lay pale, cold, and nearly pulseless, from excessive haemor- 
rhage. The abscess had broken, and when the discharge occurred, 
as the mother states, she attempted to raise her arm, and the blood 
jetted out in a stream, several feet across the room. Pressure was 
made above the orifice with the finger, the applications all re- 


moved, the arm made bare, and covered again with towels wet 
with cold water. Brandy and chicken broth were administered, 
but the stomach rejected them. Resort was then had to injections 
of beef tea, and sinapisms to the extremities. Carb. ammon. in 
emuls: amy gdal: was administered, and retained. The pulse 
rose a little, and after tone was restored in some measure to 
the stomach, brandy and water were freely given. I deemed 
it useless to attempt to secure the artery as the screams and 
struggles of the child might have increased the haemorrhage, 
and as the orifice was too small to enter with the tenaculum or 
needle, without a further division. Reliance was placed on the 
cold affusions, and perfect rest — they were sufficient. By pursu- 
ing this plan for several days, re-action was restored, and the pa- 
tient is now recovering. Much thick and offensive matter was 
thrown off from the tumour, and continues to some extent at this 
time. The swelling has entirely subsided, and there remains an 
inability to extend the fore-arm from contraction of the biceps 
muscle, the radial tendon of which rises distinctly into the bend 
of the arm, when the extensor muscles attempt to act. The sub- 
stance of the biceps muscle, and the coats of some one of the im- 
portant branches of the brachial artery must have been embraced 
within the sphere of the suppurative action, and suffered a disso- 
lution during its progress, in order to give rise to the results 
which followed. Had the abscess been penetrated by the lancet, 
the haemorrhage would no doubt have been attributed to its use; 
and had the patient died, the reflections of the operator must cer- 
tainly have been very unsatisfactory. 




By N. W. Condit, M. D. 

I propose to lay before you the history of two cases of fracture 
of the cervix- femoris; one of which, by the death of the patient, 
afforded an opportunity to verify its exact character. The other, 
though not equally ascertained in this respect, is one of interest, 
on account of its favourable result, under circumstances of a dis- 
couraging nature. Fractures of this bone, occurring wholly with- 
in the capsule of the joint, it is stoutly maintained by many dis- 
tinguished physicians of the present day, are never re-united by 
ossification, because of the small quantity of blood received by the 
head of the bone, (being only that which comes by the vessels of 
the round ligament,) or at least, that no case is yet recorded 
where such bony union is demonstrated by dissection. Captain 
J. B., aged over eighty years, in ascending a flight of steps from 
the ground to his house, missed his footing and fell with a few 
sticks of wood he was carrying, down three or four steps to the 
ground. He rose without difficulty, and walked a short distance, 
when he was suddenly disabled from proceeding further, by acute 
pain seizing him suddenly at the hip joint of the left side. He 
was assisted by some members of his family to a bed, but could 
only lie with comfort upon his back. He was of large stature, 
about five feet ten or eleven inches in height, weighing probably 
one hundred and eighty pounds, though not corpulent. I saw 
him about four hours after the accident, and afterwards with my 
father, Dr. Lewis Condit, when he complained only of pain at 
the groin upon motion of the left leg. There was no displace- 
ment in any way, its position and length corresponded perfectly 
with the other limb. No crepitation could be heard upon rotating 
the limb, though in truth, on account of the suffering produced by 
it, but little effort was made to produce it. The manner in which 


the patient fell, his age, and the fragile state of bones incident to 
advanced life, rendered it almost certain that the neck of the 
femur was fractured, while the state of the limb, and the fact that 
he could not step upon it, made it probable that thefracture was 
within the capsular ligament. The treatment consisted in apply- 
ing to the pelvis, a cushion lined with doe-skin, fitting it accurate- 
ly, and of width sufficient to cover the ossa-femoris for two inches 
below the trochanters. This greatly relieved the pain at the joint, 
which had been excruciating upon every movement of the body. 
The knee was placed in a semiflexed position, supported by pil- 
lows, and an evaporating lotion applied to the groin and upper 
part of the thigh. At the end of four or five days the limb was 
perceptibly shortened. Desault's splint was applied, but re- 
moved in a few days by the patient, and no persuasion could 
prevail to obtain his consent to any means for keeping the limb in 
situ, though various expedients were resorted to. For two or three 
weeks it continued to become shorter, until it measured half an 
inch less than the other. It being the month of May, and certain 
that if he lived, he must be confined to his bed through the hot 
weather, he was placed upon a mattrass on one of Wooley's bed- 
steads, which is so contrived that the position can be changed from 
sitting to horizontal, or fixed at any angle desired, without mov- 
ing the limb; the lower part of the bed may be raised or depressed 
in the same way, and the bowels evacuated without moving. The 
pain at the acetabulum gradually abated and was succeeded about 
a fortnight after the accident, by great soreness at the ankle joint 
and at the tendo-achilles, and although great care was taken to re- 
move pressure from the part, this distressing symptom continued 
even to the last, to give him great annoyance, so that he groaned 
from agony whenever subjected to the least motion. He remained 
in this state, with but little variation through the summer, being 
comfortable when left quiet, but unable to get oft* his back, by rea- 
son of the state of the ankle joint. In September it became evi- 
dent that his constitution was to sink under the protracted confine- 
ment, and he began to complain of tenderness of the sacrum. 
Efforts were made to prevent it, but ulcers formed there, and 
towards the end of October diarrhoea came on, and soon becoming 

unmanageable, he died early in November. 



But little emaciation had taken place. No examination was 
made of any other part than the diseased limb. The ankle ex- 
hibited no mark of diseased action, by which the pain so long 
complained of, could be accounted for; there was neither stiffness, 
thickening of the part, nor increased vascularity. The muscles 
and all the structure about the cervix- femoris were more pale than 
usual, and scarcely gave out any blood upon being cut into. The 
capsular ligament was entire, giving no appearance of having been 
lacerated, its texture was somewhat thickened. The ligamentum- 
teres was in a state of vascularity, which gave it about the colour 
of the muscles around the joint, though it retained its wonted 
firmness and strength. The acetabulum was normal in appear- 
ance. The neck of the femur was shortened, and on opening the 
capsule the fracture was discovered wholly within it. The head 
of the bone had been broken across transversely, exactly at its 
point of union with the neck, and about two lines from the bony 
edge of the acetabulum. The ridge characteristic of the seat of 
fracture had been thrown out, and the re-union was firm for rather 
more than three-quarters of the circumference of the bone. The 
limb having been drawn up by the contraction of the muscles, a 
considerable angle was formed by the head and neck at their point 
of juncture, but they were as firmly united by osseous formation 
as if they had never been separated. On the upper side, where 
the fractured edges were riot in apposition, union was not yet 
complete, but ossification was going on upon all the broken sur- 
face, and had the patient lived a few months, would doubtless 
nave been perfected. Could the state of the injured part have 
been by any means ascertained, and had not the condition of the 
ankle forbidden it, the patient I think might safely have walked; 
there was sufficient firmness at the fracture for the limb to have 
contributed its share of support to the trunk. From a fear lest 
some accident should befall the specimen in handling it, I left it 
with a mechanic to have the head protected by a covering of wire. 
He placed it for safe-keeping in a desk in his room, belonging to 
another man, who removing the desk in his absence, threw out the 
bone, supposing it to be of no value, and though diligent search 
was made, it was not recovered. I had the preparation in my 
possession for two or three years, and during that time it was 


shown to many members of the profession, who expressed but one 
opinion, that it was a case in which a complete fracture entirely 
ivilhin the capsule ivas re-united by ossification. 

Before offering any remarks upon the subject generally, permit 
me to give the history of another case which has occurred recently, 
and which there is reason to believe is similar in its character to 
that of Captain B. 

Mrs. W., of New York, somewhat past fifty years of age, on the 
14th of January last, fell, striking the trochanter, of the left thigh 
upon the edge of a wooden step in a her yard. She was instantly 
sensible of acute pain at the spot, and also in the groin. She was 
unable to walk, but was carried into the house and advice pro- 
cured, but it was not supposed that any injury existed, other than 

Five weeks had elapsed when I saw her, but such was the ten- 
derness of the parts that no thorough examination was attempted, 
until leeching once or twice repeated, had been premised. Upon 
strongly rotating the limb at this time, crepitation was at once very 
distinct. There was however no displacement, no shortening, 
nor indeed any thing to indicate its condition, unless attempts at 
motion were made. The patient could lie in no other position 
than upon the back, and movement in any degree was so painful 
that with the added fatigue from lying in one posture, she passed 
her nights almost without sleep. So much suffering was created 
by the attempt, that but little pains were taken to ascertain, or 
even to form any very definite opinion as to the exact point at 
which the fracture had been made. With the approbation of Dr. 
Hoffman, who at my request visited the patient with me, a broad 
bandage made of linen, unyielding in its texture, cut to the form, 
and of breadth sufficient to cover the pelvis, and extending two 
inches below the trochanters, and fastened by buckles over the 
right groin, was applied, and made as tight as could conveniently 
be borne. The limb was placed in a semiflexed position both at 
the knee and hip joints, and the bed so arranged that attention to 
the calls of nature did not disturb its posture. The patient was 
informed that there was reason to fear that union might not take 
place at all, and that even if it should, it might be by ligament 
«>nly, and that the shortening from absorption of the broken sur* 


faces would doubtless be very considerable. With a full under- 
standing of the uncertainty of the result, she submitted patiently 
to the confinement for nine weeks. The support given by the 
bandage greatly diminished the amount of suffering, and with the 
aid of a few drops of morphine, sleep was procured. In about a 
week the limb was found to be shortened, and the foot somewhat 
everted. A stocking was made of the same material with the 
bandage upon the pelvis, with a ring in the sole of the shoe part of 
it, and lacing up at the side. This was lashed fast to the foot-board 
of a long splint, and counter-extension made from the perinoeum 
after Desault's method, sufficient to keep the limb from shortening 
more than one sixth of an inch; a greater force than this being for- 
bidden by the irritable state of the constitution, and the pain pro- 
duced by its application. The limb being thus secured, she was 
permitted to raise her shoulders by means of a cord from the ceil- 
ing, the other foot resting against a firm foot-board; this con- 
tributed to relieve the tediousness of the confinement. 

At the end of nine weeks we had the very great satisfaction to 
find not only that no crepitation could be produced, but that very 
considerable weight could be sustained without inconvenience. 
The soft parts enveloping the joints had nearly parted with their 
morbid tenderness, and with the aid of crutches she moved about 
with tolerable facility. The anasarcous state of the limb upon 
the first use of it gave some trouble, but this was relieved by the 
free use of the dash of cold salt water, bandaging having failed to 
give any relief. She can at this time, (seven months from the 
commencement of treatment,) bear nearly all the weight of the 
body in walking without crutches, and would doubtless do it en- 
tirely but for an unfortunate fall about four months since, from 
the lame foot being caught in the carpet, in which the knee joint 
sustained a severe contusion and is yet lame, though now daily 
improving. The injured leg is one fourth of an inch shorter than 
the other, and the toe somewhat everted, but she is able to move 
with facility in every direction, and no reasonable doubts can be 
entertained that with a little more time the cure will be perfect. 

We of course, are not at liberty to assume that this case is one 
of the same character with the former, nor is it introduced for the 
purpose of strengthening the conclusion drawn from that, as to the 


resources of nature. It appears to me however, to demonstrate 
the expediency of making an attempt to effect a cure in cases of 
even a most unpromising kind ; for a case less promising than 
these two is seldom brought to our notice. From the resemblance 
of the two cases both at the time they were first seen, and during 
the time they were under treatment, I am strongly inclined to be- 
lieve that in both, the state of fracture was the same. In both 
cases the displacement did not take place for some time after the 
accident, and when it did, it was about equal in kind and degree. 
As soon as the parts were at rest, nature, as if a sentient princi- 
ple, set about repairing the breach. To keep the bones in apposi- 
tion, I conceive the bandage upon the pelvis contributed more 
than any other part of the treatment. 

From an examination of such writers upon surgery as are with- 
in my reach, there seems much contrariety of opinion as to the 
possibility of re-union by bone, taking place in this species of frac- 
ture. The French surgeons generally, are satisfied from speci- 
mens in their cabinets, that it does occasionally happen. Mr. 
Amesbury and Mr. Guthrie, of London, are of the same opinion; 
but Sir Astley Cooper, and Mr. Colles, of Dublin, who have both 
given special attention to this point, maintain that all the speci- 
mens yet shown to them, are either cases of incomplete fracture, 
or in others, that it extended so far down as to be covered by the 
capsule in some measure. Still, while great names are ranged in 
opposition as to the possibility of the case, all agree that such is 
its unfrequency that it can never be made a ground for favourable 
prognosis. So firm indeed are many in this opinion, and among 
them Sir Astley Cooper, that when satisfied that a fracture is near 
the head of the bone, the patient is consigned to hopeless lame- 
ness, and rest after the second week is not enjoined $ but the pa- 
tient is permitted to hobble about, as a false joint is thought inevi- 
table. Knowing what we do of the resources of nature, is it justi- 
fiable to abandon such cases without making a trial of all the 
means which promise to be of any avail in constitutions of vigour, 
adequate to enduring the necessary confinement ? Mercurial 
action has been found to be productive of the healing of fract- 
ures, although we have been in the habit of considering it as 
a specific in promoting absorption. Our ignorance of its modus 


operandi is of course not to be urged against its use, as it would 
bring a fearful proscription upon the materia medica. Though 
through the ligamentum-teres is the only connection the head of 
the bone retains with the vascular system, yet in this case, that 
was in appearance more like muscle, owing probably to an en- 
largement, and perhaps multiplication of its vessels for the pur- 
pose of performing its part in repairing the breach which had been 
made. Beside this, do we know that much more vascular action 
is requisite to the formation of bone, than to the formation of cal- 
lus which is the usual termination in this case. Nor can we be 
certain that even the lower end of bone alone may not be compe- 
tent to effect a restoration, provided nothing interferes with the 
process set up by nature. 

But I forbear further remarks, and would gladly abridge what 
is already written, but on a review it seems to me, that any ma- 
terial curtailment would render the whole obscure, and confused, 
if not quite unintelligible. 

Morristown, 1848. 



The British and Foreign Medico -Chirurgical Review, or Quar- 
terly Journal of Medicine and Surgery, No. 1, January 1848. 
New York, re-published by Richard and George S. Wood 
No. 261 Pearl Street. 

We have received the first number of this work, and esteem it 
as one of the most valuable among the many medical periodicals 
of the times. It purports to give an outline of the doings of the 
profession abroad, and to review such foreign publications, as may 
be placed in the hands of its contributors. It is a quarterly of 
284 pages, and is re-issued by its enterprising publishers in this 
country, at three dollars per annum. We observe under the 
head of " Analytical and Critical Reviews," some notices of a 
work issued by E. A. Parkes, M. D., on the treatment of the 
Asiatic or Algide Cholera, and another entitled " The Cholera 
not to be arrested by quarantine," &c. by Gavin Milroy, M. D. ; 
both issued from the London press within the last year. And as 
the present is a time when the profession of this country, and the 
community generally are fully awake to the threatening of a re- 
visitation of this terrific scourge, we shall draw upon the pages of 
the "Review" for some hints upon this subject, which may be 
profitable to our readers, and will give in Dr. Milroy's own words 
a brief history of its most recent appearance in the East. 

" After having been quiescent during the winter of 1845-6, it 
broke out with extreme severity in the following May at Teheran, 
carrying off as many as 500 a day, for several weeks, and re- 
ducing the population of that town by at least 20,000 souls. The 
description given of the cases, shows the extreme malignity of the 
epidemic: — * those who were attacked, dropped suddenly down in 
a state of lethargy, and, at the end of two or three hours, expired, 
without any convulsions or vomiting, but from a complete stagna- 
tion of the blood, to which no remedies could restore its circula- 

"Now it is a fact full of interest to the medical inquirer, that, 
at the very time when this work of devastation was going on in 
the north of Persia, there took place atKurrachee, near the mouth 


of the Indus, that terrific outburst of the pestilence, which, in the 
course of a few days, swept off upwards of 8000 victims. The 
description that has been given by an eye-witness of the scene, is 
so full of fearful and instructive interest, as regards some of the 
most striking characters of pestilential visitations, that we cannot 
withhold a brief account of its leading particulars. The heat had 
been intense during the iirst fortnight in June, but the station re- 
mained tolerably healthy. On the 13th, a Sunday, the atmos- 
phere was more than usually stagnant and oppressive ; one corres- 
pondent, who was present, says; « the very heavens seemed drawn 
down upon our shoulders; the feeling was suffocating.' A dark 
portentous-looking cloud crept up the sky as the troops were pro- 
ceeding to church, and a sudden burst of wind threatened the 
buildings. It passed away almost as speediiy as it came, and 
when the worshippers retired, the air was as still as when they 
assembled. At the same hour did the pestilence appear. Before 
midnight, nine soldiers of the 86th regiment were dead; and men 
began to be brought into the hospital in such numbers that it was 
difficult to make arrangements for their reception. It was a fear- 
ful night. With morning, came the tidings that the pestilence 
was overspreading the town, and that fifty persons had already 
fallen victims to its deadly poison. How awful must have been 
the rapidity of the attack, when we learn that sometimes, within 
little more than five minutes, hale and hearty men were seized, 
cramped, collapsed, and dead ! The only thing we can compare 
it to, is the deadly effect of a serpent's venom. Men, attending 
the burials of their comrades, were attacked, carried to the hospi- 
tal, and themselves buried the next morning. Pits were dug in 
the churchyard, morning and evening; sown up in their beddings 
and coflinless, the dead were laid side by side, one service read 
over all ! For the next five days, it raged with appalling fury; 
it then abated in its intensity, but continued to hover around the 
place for about another week. Within less than a fortnight, 900 
Europeans, including 815 fighting men, were swept away. Be- 
sides these, 600 native soldiers, and 7000 of the camp followers 
and inhabitants of the town had been hurried into eternity ! What 
must have been the scene of desolation, and the sickening pollu- 
tion of the air after such a visitation, when nearly 9000 bodies 
were festering under the ground beneath a tropical sun! 

" Altogether, this comparatively insulated eruption at Kurra- 
chee, while the head-quarters, so to speak, of the pestilence were 
in the north of Persia, presents an instance very analogous to that 
of the equally dreadful invasion of the disease in the camp of the 
Marquis of Hastings, in Nov. 1817, not long after the first ap- 
pearance of the great epidemic in the delta of the Ganges. The 
same idea is naturally suggested by both, viz. that the cause of the 
malady was something altogether independent of infectious com- 
munication, and must have existed in the atmosphere." 


The drift of the work appears to be, to establish the opinion that 
Asiatic Cholera is not infectious — that its existence is owing to a 
malarious atmosphere, and its propagation dependent upon a dif- 
fusion of the malaria, and not upon human communication. The 
author observes a strong analogy between the progress of Cholera 
and Influenza, and believes that the propagation of the latter is just 
as much dependent upon infection as the former, and that as in- 
fluenza is attributed by all, to a peculiar atmospheric influence, 
so cholera is owing to a modification of the same cause, particu- 
larly, as there is a striking concomitance in the origin and course 
of the two epidemics, though he believes that there may be a lim- 
ited propagation by infection, where the constitution is somewhat 
impaired by the epidemic influence. He further adverts to the 
fact, that prior to the appearance of the cholera, it has frequently 
been preceded by choleroid attacks, resembling in degree the dis- 
ease itself, and dependent upon a milder malaria ,* hence it is in- 
ferred, that if this noninfectious doctrine be true, no quarantine 
regulations will affect the progress of that disease, but that it is 
the duty of the authorities to institute such sanitary measures in 
domestic and civil life, as are best calculated to promote the gene- 
ral health, and thus endeavour to prevent a predisposition in the 
constitution to the destructive influence of the malaria. 

Dr. Parkes has made very elaborate investigations into the con- 
dition of the blood, in cholera, and has availed himself of the re- 
cent discoveries which organic chemistry has developed in regard 
to the vital fluid, in order to enlighten his judgment as to the 
true pathology of the disease, and he employs the term algide, as 
descriptive of the diminution of animal heat, or the collapse, 
which forms such a remarkable and prominent symptom in the 
history of the disease, and he believes the changes in the respirato- 
ry functions, which grow out of this alteration in the blood, con- 
stitute the chief and distinctive symptoms of the malady. He 
gives the result of his observations in forty-six fatal cases of the 
disease, thirty-nine of which died in the collapsed stage, and the 
remainder during the subsequent febrile affections. He found in 
the head, an accumulation of blood in the veins of the dura and 
pia-mater — in the lungs, the most common appearance was the 

presence of blood in the large vessels, deficient crepitation, 


arising from the loss of air and blood, and from approximation of 
the molecules of the pulmonary substance: the right side of the 
heart was generally filled, sometimes distended, and the left side 
with the aorta, usually empty, and the blood itself was found to 
be deficient in fibrine, or a great tendency to the separation of this 
ingredient, red particles sometimes partly dissolved in the serum, 
and sometimes much altered in figure and appearance. The con- 
stancy of these post-mortem appearances, led Dr. Parkes to the 
following conclusion. 

" As, therefore, the mechanical part of respiration is perfect, 
and as there is no impairment in the voluntary command of the 
respiratory muscles, and as the heart evidently beats in many cases 
till stopped by the want of blood on the left side, and by its accu- 
mulation on the right side, we are compelled to look for the cause 
of such arrest of the circulation in the only remaining element of 
respiration ; namely, in the blood itself." 

Much more minute notiees of the condition of the circulating 
fluid are to be found in the review, but as our time and space will 
not admit of very extended remarks, we shall pass on to some 
considerations on the condition of the discharges from the aliment- 
ary canal; the "rice-water stools" as they are usually called, 
which occur in this disease, are supposed by Dr. Parkes to consist 
in part, of the water and salts of the blood, mixed with a proteine 

■ That the greater part of the proteine constituent consists of 
fibrine, also appears probable ; but albumen is undoubtedly some- 
times present, as proved by the coagulability of the thin fluid ; in 
other cases, if this ingredient be present, it seems to have assumed 
the insoluble form immediately after being poured into the canal. 

" Referring now to the state of the blood as already described, 
it is impossible to avoid connecting these two observations to- 
gether; — that whereas the blood was generally deficient in its 
power of coagulation, or was altogether destitute of this property, 
or in other cases separated the fibrine more readily than usual,-— 
so in the intestinal canal a substance was found, which presented 
many of the physical and chemical qualities belonging to the in- 
gredient which appeared to be wanting in the blood." 

The symptoms of the disease are next treated of in their order, 
and are divided into two groups ; first, those derived from lesions 
of the circulation and respiration, and which are called by way of 
distinction, the algide group ; and secondly, the abdominal symp- 


toms of vomiting, purging, and the dependent spasms : these 
groups of symptoms are supposed to be entirely independent of 
each other, both growing out of a common cause. The algide 
symptoms according to Dr. Parkes, constitute the disease, hence 
its pathology is found in the lesions of the circulation and respi- 
ration, and the treatment must be directed to the cure of these 
particular lesions : " in proportion to them, is the malignity and 
rapidity of the case ; they afford the only measure of its severity, 
and from them only, can a correct prognosis be formed." The 
abdominal symptoms, cramps. &c, are attributed to the irritation 
produced in the intestinal canal, by the presence of an adventi- 
tious fluid, and hence are considered as " reflex spasms." We 
consider the work before us a valuable addition to our medical 
literature. It places in our possession, at a small expense, an 
outline of the opinions of some of the most eminent men of Great 
Britain ; of their mode of practice, and the pathological views 
apon which it is founded. 

The nineteenth Annual Report of the Inspectors of the Eastern 
State Penitentiary of the State of Pennsylvania. Transmit- 
ted to the Senate and House of Representatives, March, 1848. 

It is only within a few years that the Medical public have been 
possessed of any thing like accurate reports of the sanitary con- 
dition of prisons. And as the interest in the subject of prison 
discipline increases, they are becoming every year more impor- 
tant, and are more eagerly sought for by the physician and phi- 
lanthropist. The relative merits of the two systems known as 
the " separate" and " congregate," is now undergoing a search- 
ing scrutiny from those who have devoted much attention to the 
subject, both in this country and in Europe. It is therefore with 
peculiar pleasure that we have received the report before us, 
which contains a short, but clear and candid exposition of the con- 
dition of the Penitentiary, by Robert A. Given, M. D., the medi- 
cal officer. It appears from this report, that the total mortality 


for 1847, has been nine, including one suicide, while the average 
population in the prison has been two hundred and ninety-four, 
the average number of white persons has been two hundred and 
fifteen, with only two deaths, while the average number of colored 
persons has been seventy-nine, with six deaths. This frightful 
disproportion in the mortality of the two classes in separate pri- 
sons, has frequently been the subject of remark by medical men, 
and it is high time that the attention of the public authorities in 
those states where the separate system prevails, should be aroused 
to the fact. If the chances of life in those predisposed to a stru- 
mous habit of body are so greatly endangered, as is represented by 
the report, it is certainly time that some means should be adopted 
to arrest this disproportionate fatality. It appears to us that there 
should be such a modification of this system, as to allow those per- 
sons whose health is evidently impaired by close confinement, to 
engage in the more active employments which prevail in congre- 
gate prisons, thus securing more exercise in the open air, and 
giving to the mind a freedom to engage in its own reflections, 
without being harassed by physical ailments. We have also in 
the report before us, a table furnished by Dr. Given, showing 
" the cases of insanity that occurred in the Eastern Penitentiary 
in the year 1847." These are ten in number. From the head- 
ing of the table, we infer that these cases originated in the insti- 
tution, and were not taken there for want of an asylum for the 
insane. If so, it appears to us a discouraging fact as to the suc- 
cess of the system of Pennsylvania. In New Jersey, where the 
system of separation is at present carried out in a modified form, 
insanity appeared to an alarming extent in the early history of 
the State Prison at Trenton ; and if we remember rightly, the in- 
telligent physician of that institution, Dr. Coleman, checked it by 
means of careful and judicious association. The principle was 
not strictly adhered to where it was found to impair the health of 
either mind or body. Wherever there was a tendency to insanity, 
or to any physical disease which demanded for its cure or allevia- 
tion, a departure from the usual course of confinement, the phi- 
lanthropy of the inspectors allowed such modifications in indivi- 
dual cases, as the judgment of their medical counsellor directed. 
Where solitude has a tendency to induce melancholy, or to bring 


on any other form of insanity, or where it may affect the general 
health, and be the remote or exciting cause of bodily disease, we 
believe it should be avoided as far as it can be. Insanity in a 
prison, should be treated as insanity in an asylum, so far as 
architectural arrangements and convenience will allow. Con- 
sumption in a prison, should be treated as consumption in a hos- 
pital, and the patient should be allowed exercise in the fresh air ; 
and all the hygienic remedies so salutary and comforting to the 
doomed victim, should certainly be made available for his relief. 

The following extract from Dr. Given's report, would seem to 
indicate his belief that both mortality and insanity might be di- 
minished by proper means. 

" When speaking of the physical health, I stated my belief that 
by proper sanitary regulations the mortality could be reduced 
very greatly, without the slightest encroachment on the principles 
of separation, and now, as regards the mental health, I repeat the 
same conviction with even greater confidence in its truth, and if 
possible, a more earnest desire to see the necessary measures put 
in immediate operation. 9 ' 

If this be so, why, in the name of humanity, are not these "ne- 
cessary measures" instituted ! While it is the right of society to 
punish men for crime, we have no right to make ourselves crimi- 
nals by blotting out the light of reason from the soul, or by wast- 
ing the powers of the body in unconditional confinement. Let 
the " necessary measures" that are needed for this reform, be 
speedily adopted. 

Report of the Pennsylvania Hospital for the Insane, for the year 
1847. By Thomas S. Kirkbride, M. D. Physician to the Insti- 

We have been in the habit for several years past, of receiving 
Dr. Kirkbride's reports, and always read them with interest, but 
we do not recollect to have seen one so replete with valuable sug- 
gestions, at that now before us. We shall notice it very briefly. 
The usual statistical information is furnished in the report, by 
which we learn that during the past year four hundred and one 

206 dr. kirkbride's annual report. 

patients have been under care in the institution, and that one hun- 
dred and eleven of these have been discharged cured. It is also 
stated that the number of patients received, and the number dis- 
charged cured, have regularly increased every year, with a single 
exception, since the opening of the institution: the various im- 
provements about the building and grounds are detailed, and 
among them is a description and plan of a cottage, detached from 
the main edifice, which has been erected for the purpose of testing 
the value of separate treatment of such persons whose mental dis- 
orders are so slight, that they feel themselves unwilling to submit 
to the ordinary discipline of the wards, and yet are desirous of 
being benefitted by Hospital treatment. The cottage is like a 
private residence in its appearance, and is divided into conveni- 
ent and handsomely furnished apartments. Dr. Kirkbride is of 
opinion that a few such buildings would add to the usefulness of 
the institution. In addition to the various employments and 
amusements, a course of instructive lectures embracing various 
branches of science, have been delivered by Dr. John Curwen, the 
assistant physician. These lectures were instituted a few years 
ago, by Dr. Curwen, and have been continued since that time 
with entire satisfaction to the managers and patients. The course 
extends through six months of the year, and the total number of 
lectures given during the last year, has been fifty. We believe, 
to Dr. Curwen is due the credit of carrying out this system of in- 
struction (which is regarded as an important moral agent in the 
cure of the insane) more thoroughly than it has been done in any 
other institution in this country. To us, however, the most in- 
teresting part of the report is to be found in the enlightened views 
of its author, as expressed under the head of " Provisions for the 
habitually intemperate." We make the following extracts. 

" Where real insanity is the result of intemperance, a Hospital 
for the insane is unquestionably the proper place for the victim 
of this wide-spread vice, and when mania-a-potu — which ought 
never to be received into an institution for the insane, — termi- 
nates in insanity, as it occasionally does, the same destination is 
then proper for the wretched sufferer, whose case is likely to be 
of long standing, and the recovery always doubtful. 

"An uncontrollable fondness for, and indulgence in, ardent 
spirits or other stimulants, with the usual results of such a course, 
are occasionally only symptoms of insanity, coming on in the pro- 


gress of the case, often in individuals of the most correct habits, 
who had never before manifested such a propensity, and disap- 
pearing as the other symptoms of insanity are removed. In these 
individuals, of course, this peculiarity otters no reason for inter- 
fering with the ordinary disposition of such cases. 

" There are, however, other and quite numerous classes of ha- 
bitual drinkers, who are not suitable subjects for a Hospital for 
the insane, but for whom some special provision should be made 
on their own account, and still more for the sake af their families 
and friends, and for the peace and quiet of the community. 

"One of these classes is composed of individuals whose intem- 
perance leads to acts of outrage against society, and brings grief 
and terror into quiet families, with ruin to their worldly pros- 
pects, but who seem to care little for reformation, and for whose 
acts insanity cannot be pleaded as an excuse. The seclusion of 
these persons brings temporary improvement, but nothing more, 
and if allowed, they would, for limited periods, be frequently 
found in our Hospitals for the insane, for admission into which 
they clearly can have no just claim." 

The impropriety of admitting persons of the latter class into 
an insane Asylum, is manifest ; the effect of associating those 
whom the law regards as criminals, with the objects of disease 
end misfortune, is not only injurious to the insane, but promises 
no permanent good to the inebriate. Some other provision should 
be made for these, and for a still more unfortunate class, which 
we believe is more numerous than is generally supposed. How 
often do we find men, amiable in their dispositions, with well cul- 
tivated minds, and liberal means, encircled by all the domestic 
and moral associations, calculated to promote enjoyment and hap- 
piness, and yet who have the unconquered appetite for stimulating 
drink to contend with, without the power of resisting its demands. 
We believe there are many who are anxious to refrain from this 
pernicious practice, who require to be placed under a system of 
medical and moral treatment, that can only be made available by 
some judicious arrangements sanctioned and sustained by law. 
We have thought much upon this subject, and are glad to find it 
taken hold of by one whose judgment and influence command so 
much respect as the author of the " report." We conclude our 
observations upon this subject by one more extract. 

" For all these different cases some provision should be made, 
a retreat provided, where those who are anxious to reform should 
be surrounded by every influence likely to second their good in- 


tentions, and where society would be protected from those, who* 
with little care for the result, are not only ruining themselves, 
but destroying every good prospect of their families. The deten- 
tion should be legalized, and not terminated but upon a proper 
medical or judicial investigation, and not regulated in any respect 
by the wishes of the patient or his friends. 

" Such an institution should be under the direction of a well 
educated and judicious physician, who should treat his patients as 
laboring under disease; and with kindness and firmness, a combi- 
nation of medical and moral means, there is little doubt but that 
many good citizens would be annually restored to society 5 and 
where permanent reformation was found to be impracticable, in- 
dividuals would be kept from habitual debasement, their families 
saved from ruin, and society protected from violence and disor- 
der. It is a field for labor worthy of the active benevolence of 
the age." 

Principles and Practice of Surgery, by the late George M'Clellan, 
M. I).; Edited by his son, John H. B. M'Clellan, M. D. 
pp. 432. Philadelphia, Grigg, Elliot & Co., No. 14 North 
Fourth street. 

The late hour at which we have received the above work, will pre- 
vent an extended notice of its contents. The distinguished posi- 
tion which the author long held as a teacher and as an operative 
surgeon, led us to expect a valuable work from his hands. In this 
we have not been disappointed. There is in the volume before 
us, ample evidence of the intellectual power, and of the profound 
learning of the writer. His thoughts are not common place, not 
a mere repetition of the sentiments of others, but he writes as- 
«*one having authority " — as one who has had ample experience of 
the things which he communicates to others. Hence the work of 
Dr. M'Ciellan is not a mere compilation, but an original, philo- 
sophical treatise on Surgery 5 replete with valuable practical infor- 
mation. The first hundred pages are occupied with the considera- 
tion of " the immediate effects of injuries upon the system " — in- 
cluding a graphic description of nervous shock, reaction, and the 
various forms and degrees of subsequent irritation. Then follows 
a discussion of the doctrines of inflammation, covering a large 


portion of the remaining chapters under this head. The modem 
distinctions of capillary hyperemia, active and passive congestion, 
&c, were in the opinion of our author, perfectly understood by 
John Hunter. He says: 

" Now all these points were fully and admirably treated of by the 
illustrious Hunter, under the heads of 4 union by first intention,' 
and * union by adhesive inflammation.' We should scarcely do 
justice to the memory of that great man, were we to omit credit- 
ing to him every sound physiological and pathological view in re- 
gard to these subjects, which has since been entertained by our 
profession. Neither new forms of arrangement, nor altered names, 
can hide or even overcloud the profound and luminous ideas which 
were first developed in the great work on the Blood, Inflamma- 
tion, and Gun-shot Wounds. As these processes, when they oc- 
cur in connection with injuries, appear to favour the reparation of 
such injuries, and afterwards terminate, under proper treatment, 
in a speedy resolution, they were characteristically denominated 
by him healthy inflammations. The irritation often passes how- 
ever, into a higher form of excitement, and then it exhibits a more 
durable and perverted mode of action. In this condition the ner- 
vous sensibility is not merely augmented, but it becomes decisive- 
ly morbid and unremitting, so that every kind of impression, from 
internal as well as external causes, becomes distressing. The 
capillaries are still further dilated,* even paralyzed, the heat in- 
creases to a higher degree, the redness is more intense, and the 
tumefaction rises. In short, the four diagnostic symptoms of 
Celsus, l color , dolor, tumor, rubor,' are all associated, and then 
the morbid state termed by all surgeons inflammation, exists." 

Nor does Dr. M'Ciellan conceive that the modern doctrine of 
inflammation introduced by Bichat and the general anatomists, is 
any improvement upon the original views of Hunter. He thus 
expresses himself on this point: 

" The doctrine of some of the general anatomists, that the dif- 
ferent forms or theories of inflammation depend wholly upon the 
organization of the tissues, in which they occur, is altogether too 
refined and exclusive for our approbation. We shall everywhere 
admit, that the disease is morbid by the peculiarities of texture, 
both in its local and sympathetic manifestations; but it always 
presents the same general characters in whatever part it occurs, 
and one and the same tissue is frequently found to exhibit very 
different forms of inflammatory action. The mucous membranes 
will under one form of this disease increase their natural exhala- 
tions and secretions in a slightly altered state, at another time 

* Hunter conceived that this was done by " an action of dilatation," 


they will throw off genuine pus either with or without ulceration; 
sometimes their inflammations will terminate in hsemorrhage, and 
at others by an effusion of coagulating lymph into the interstices, 
which will produce a thickening or stricture of the part, or upon 
the free surface in the form of a loose and polypus-like exudation* 
The serous membranes, although still more simple in their tex- 
ture, are liable to almost as great a diversity of modes of inflam- 
matory action. They commonly exhale the plastic fibrin, and 
terminate by a speedy adhesion to the opposite surfaces, which 
circumscribes the disease to a small space around the injured part. 
Frequently, however, not a particle of fibrin is exhaled, and then 
the inflammation is rapidly diffused throughout the whole mem- 
brane, by continuous sympathy, like a spreading erysipelas, and 
speedily destroys life. This tissue often exhales a serous fluid 
loaded with broken flakes of coagulated and unorganized fibrin, 
and distends the cavity either locally into a circumscribed abcess, 
or generally into a dropsy. Sometimes it ulcerates under in- 
flammation, and occasionally it becomes encrusted with a false 
and only partially organized membrane. The skin is noto- 
riously liable to a great variety of inflammations, many of which 
cannot be accounted for by the peculiarity of the individual por- 
tion of it which is affected. But we need not occupy more time 
to prove a self-evident proposition. In the progress of our ob- 
servations, we shall everywhere see, that other circumstances 
modify the character of inflammation, besides the conditions of 

The author has devoted seventy-seven pages to the considera- 
tion of syphilis, and has presented a lucid and admirable descrip- 
tion of the various forms of this malady. We regret that we can- 
not follow him through these interesting descriptions, which have 
recently attracted so large a share of attention from surgical 
writers. The circumstances under which the author deems it 
proper to administer or to withold mercury are fully stated, and 
the various controverted points connected with this interesting 
disease are treated in his characteristic style. The last one hun- 
dred and twenty pages are occupied with the description of mor- 
bid growths; including the various forms of malignant and non- 
malignant tumors. Many of the interesting cases and operations 
which have given the author so much distinction as an operator, 
are here detailed, and illustrated by well executed wood cuts. 

In closing the work at this point, the reader has to regret that 
so many interesting subjects have been left untouched, and that a 
writer who has shown himself eminently qualified to communicate 


valuable instruction, in a style at once clear, lucid and concise, 
should have been so suddenly arrested by the hand of death, in 
the midst of a work, which, while it would have added greatly to 
his reputation, would have conferred an important benefit upon 
the medical profession of our country. 

The volume is got up in most excellent taste by the enterpris- 
ing publishers, and the Editor has conferred a favour upon the 
profession, by rescuing from oblivion, and arranging in proper 
order manuscripts, which, but for his interference, might have been 
lost to the public. 

Dr. M'Clellan's death has occurred since our last issue, and it is 
fitting here, that as we pass from a hasty notice of his work, we 
should pause to refer to the circumstances of his demise. He was 
in the fifty-first year of his age, and had suffered for a year or more 
with a chronic disease, which was afterwards discovered to have its 
seat in the mucous coat of the bowels. The immediate cause of 
his sudden death was attributed to " an ulcerated opening, a few 
inches below the sigmoid flexure of the colon, 5 '* which was re- 
vealed by a post-mortem investigation. He visited his patients 
as usual the day before his death, and was unexpectedly called 
away, mourned by his family, and regretted by a large circle of 
friends. As a surgeon Dr. M'Cleilan's reputation extended " far 
and wide." Early in his career he performed some of the most 
important capital operations, and his subsequent history as an 
operator was characterized by unusual adroitness and rapidity. 
Opthalmic surgery, syphilis, and lithotomy were branches of the 
science to which he paid special attention, and for the cure of 
which he gained a special reputation. The value of his experi- 
ence, and the soundness of his judgment, are well attested by his 
u Principles and Practice of Surgery." 

* Memoir of Dr. M'CJellan, by W. Darrach, M.D. 


Summary of the Transactions of the College of Physicians of 
Philadelphia, from December 1847, to March 1848, inclusive. 

The last number of the Transactions of the College of Physi- 
cians of Philadelphia, contains as usual, much interesting matter, 
and we refer to it particularly at this time, to invite the at- 
tention of our readers to an address to the medical profession of 
Pennsylvania, on the importance of a registration of births, mar- 
riages, and deaths, which was prepared by a committee of the Col- 
lege, and is issued to the medical public through their organ. In 
our Eclectic Department will be found the New Jersey Registra- 
tion bill, passed last winter, and as it will go into operation in a 
few weeks from the present time, physicians should be prepared 
to answer questions as to its utility, which will be propounded by 
the people : already has the slight expense which the bill imposes 
upon the State, been objected to, and it may lead many to find 
fault with the law, unless there are some good reasons urged for 
sustaining it. Hence we copy from the report before us, the fol- 
lowing extract. 

" It has been correctly regarded as one of the greatest benefits 
conferred by a system of Registration, that it settles the nativity 
of every citizen with such certainty, that his claims for property 
coming to him by descent can never be defeated, when founded in 
justice — but tine same system furnishes, with equal accuracy, a 
statement of the degree of every one's predisposition to disease, 
whenever the malady of which his ancestors died is susceptible of 
being inherited, and in this manner contributes largely to illus- 
trate the subject of mortal hereditary diseases. 

"A record of births and marriages, also, by permitting the inves- 
tigator to trace up the genealogy of a family and its collaterals, 
through several generations, would aid materially in determining 
the influence of consanguinity, constitutional peculiarities, social 
condition, &c, upon the procreative faculty, and the hereditary 
transmission of disease. It would furnish data for determining 
whether large families, the issue of early marriages, really increase 
the productive power of the State in proportion to their numbers, 
or, in other words, whether, as a general rule, a numerous proge- 
ny is consistent with a high degree of physical and mental vigour. 
Finally, it would show the good or evil consequences of disparity 
of vears in the parties contracting marriage. 


" In the best systems now employed, a registration of deaths 
shows, not only the total mortality occurring in a given popula- 
tion, but the cause destroying life in every case, and, consequent- 
ly becomes a precious record to the physician, and when inter- 
preted by him, an instrument of incalculable good to the Common- 
wealth. The aggregate annual mortality of our population, is now 
unknown, and the proportions of it due to different causes cannot 
even be conjectured. Little is known of the forms of disease 
which prevail in various parts of the State, and still less of the re- 
lative mortality occurring in cities, towns, and villages, rural dis- 
tricts, and particular localities, and of that affecting persons of 
different ages, sexes, and social conditions. Nor is any more ac- 
curate information possessed in regard to the modifying influences 
exerted by epidemics upon the average mortality of different 
places and those of transitory medical constitutions upon ordina- 
ry diseases. But if a proper record of deaths were kept, it would 
show, that in certain places, and amongst certain classes of people, 
the mortality is either greater or less than that affecting the com- 
munity at large, and would often lead to a successful inquiry into 
the causes which operate injuriously upon one place or class, and 
those which confer upon others a comparative immunity. It needs 
no argument to show that such a record would, also, when illus- 
trated by strictly medical reports, do more to establish the laws 
of epidemic and endemic diseases, and medical constitutions, than 
has ever been accomplished by the industry of individuals. 

" Several of the foregoing propositions are drawn from the expe- 
rience of other countries in registration. It appears from the re- 
port of the commissioners presented to the British Parliament, in 
1845, that the statements made in successive reports of the Re- 
gistrar-General, of excessive mortality occurring in various places, 
had induced many persons to search out its causes. These in- 
quiries resulted in the removal of cess-pools, and accumulations 
of putrid substances, in the digging of sewers, &c. The commis- 
sioners state, that in Manchester, after paving and draining in 
twenty streets, there was such an amelioration in the health of 
the improved district, that but ninety deaths annually took place, 
where one hundred and ten occurred before. 

"Not unfrequently the received opinion of the healthfulnessof a 
place has been directly contradicted by the evidence of registra- 
tion. In this connexion, the case of Liverpool is remarkable. The 
rapid increase of that great commercial mart was formerly attri- 
buted, amongst other things, to the salubrity of the air; but it is 
now ascertained, that at all periods of life, the chances of living 
in Liverpool, are actually less than in any other known place of 
equal population. Comparing it with Surrey, a rural district of 
England, " it appears that while a child, at birth, has a chance of 
living forty-five years in Surrey, it has a chance of living only 
twenty-five in Liverpool.'* 


" There is too much reason for apprehending that Americans 
err greatly in their estimate of the healthfulness of this country. 
It has been calculated that while the average age of the whole 
living* population of the United States is 22 years and 2 months, 
that of all living in England and Wales is 26 years and 7 months. 
It has also been shown, that while but about 56 per cent, of the 
population of the United States survive the age of 15, and 4 per 
cent, only that of 60, — nearly 64 per cent, of the population of 
England survive the former, and more than 7 per cent, the latter 
age. These statistical results and common observation mutually 
confirm one another. European travellers in this country wonder 
that so few old persons are to be met with, and Americans abroad 
are surprised at seeing so many persons advanced in life, engaging 
still in active pursuits, and retaining the cheerfulness and vigour 
of twiddle age. 

u It is not possible that the mortality amongst the well-fed and 
well-clothed inhabitants of this country should so much exceed 
that of the comparatively wretched masses of the English people, 
or that so few amongst the former should survive the labours of 
active life to guide and counsel their descendants, unless there 
were some radical error in our habits of living, or some peculiar- 
ly noxious influences of a more general kind, were acting upon the 
population. Some of these evil habits and influences may, indeed, 
be conjectured, and their malign effects in particular cases be 
averted, but until the results of Registration demonstrate their 
existence and character upon a large scale, the people will not 
be induced to believe them real, or take pains to escape from 
them. It is well known that there is a large sacrifice of human 
life in this country from the careless or reckless management of 
public conveyances, manufactories, &c, but its actual amount has 
never yet been ascertained. Yet no one can doubt that if every 
case of death by accident were reported, with its attendant cir- 
cumstances, and annually published by the government, attention 
would speedily be drawn to the evil, and effectual means taken to 
mitigate it. What is true of this particular case, is no less so of 
many others, and is in principle applicable to all in which the 
cause of mortality is in any degree removable. 

*' The degree of mortality in ordinary diseases depends chiefly 
upon two circumstances, — the condition of the patient, and his 
treatment. If, therefore, it is found that deaths from certain dis- 
eases are especially frequent amongst persons of certain ages, 
constitutions, habits, &c, or in certain trades, professions, situa- 
tions, &c, the causes of this susceptibility maybe discovered, and 
perhaps removed. In like manner, if it is found that a given dis- 
ease is more fatal in one section of country where a particular 
treatment is employed, than in another where a different method 
is pursued, the discovery would suggest an alteration of the prac- 
tice adopted in the former place, as well as an inquiry into all the 


circumstances concerned in bringing about the unfavourable re- 
sult. Many other examples of the manner in which a complete 
system of Registration may be employed in solving medical pro- 
blems might here be adduced, but a simple consideration of the 
various facts developed by such a system, will naturally suggest 
them to every reflecting mind." 

The Quarterly Summary, also contains a lengthy report on 
meteorology and epidemics, read by Dr. J. W. Moore, in which 
is found a table of observations on the wind and weather, the 
state of the thermometer, barometer, &c, for the year 1847, with 
remarks upon the prevailing diseases of the season, among which 
are mentioned dysentery, scarletina, and typhus fever. This re- 
port is worthy of a much more extended notice, but the space al- 
lotted to our Bibliographical department is already consumed. 





As a journalist it becomes our duty to record the death of such 
physicians and surgeons as are generally known to the profession, 
and a notice of whose career may be both interesting and instruc- 
tive. In addition to the brief sketch of Dr. George M'Clellan 
at p. 211, we have here to refer to the fact that two more distin- 
guished members of the medical profession in Philadelphia have 
passed away since our last number was issued; and to furnish our 
readers with a brief outline of their professional history; for the 
facts of which we are indebted to a Philadelphia correspondent. 

Death of Thomas T. Hewson, M. D. 

Dr. Hewson died on the 19th of 2d month, (February) last, in 
the seventy-sixth year of his age. He was the son of the cele- 
brated Dr. Hewson, of London — one of the ablest physiologists 
of his time, and the author of a voluminous and ingenious work 
upon the blood. Possessing in early life rare opportunities for 
acquiring medical knowledge in the great metropolis of the world, 
the younger Hewson did not fail to avail himself of them, and al- 
though deprived of the aid of his distinguished father, who died 
while he was very young, he had the benefit of converse and in- 
struction from some of the ablest physicians of London. He came 
to this country under the patronage of Dr. Franklin, and was for 
a time a member of his family in Philadelphia. 

He entered upon the practice of medicine in Philadelphia, some- 
where about the year 1798, and became the friend and contempo- 
rary of Rush, Wistar, Barton, Griffiths, James, Physick, Parrish> 
Otto, and others of the same class, who were among the founders 
and active supporters of the College of Physicians, and Medical 

LDIT0R1AL. 2 I 7 

Department of the University of Pennsylvania. He outlived all 
of these, being one of the last of that noble band of men, who laid 
the foundation of the medical character of Philadelphia. 

Although Dr. Kewson was never connected with a medical 
school as a teacher, he occupied the equally important position of 
surgeon, first to the xVlms House Hospital, and subsequently to 
the Pennsylvania Hospital, in both of which situations he was fre- 
quently called upon to give clinical instruction, and to perform 
important surgical operations. He was also at one time, Presi- 
dent of the Board of Health, and a Delegate from the College of 
Physicians of Philadelphia, to the first Convention, held in Wash- 
ington, for framing the United States Pharmacopoea. At the time of 
his death Dr. Hewson was President of the College of Physicians — 
one of the most honorable positions in which he could be placed, 
and which he held by the unanimous voice of his medical brethren. 

In all these varied situations, Dr. Hewson was distinguished for 
the urbanity of his demeanor, and for the fidelity and punctuali- 
ty with which he discharged the duties imposed upon him. Al- 
ways at his post, he never avoided the labours which were assigned 
himj being willing to work with the youngest and most inexperi- 
enced in those concerns where his aid was considered important. 

Like many of the eminent American physicians and surgeons 

of the past half century, Dr. Hewson has left behind him but few 

memorials of his talents and experience. His published papers, 

scattered through the pages of the medical periodicals, though 

short and appearing at long intervals, exhibit the learning and 

discrimination of the author, and are possessed of great practical 

interest. Perhaps his most valuable contributions to medical 

science will be found in the reports on Meteorology and Epidemics, 

annually presented to the College of Physicians, for many years 

past. These reports embrace an accurate statement of the state 

of the thermometer and barometer, of the rain, storms, &c. &c, 

occurring within the year— with the prevalent diseases, epidemics, 

&c, of the different seasons, and the deaths as reported by the 

Board of Health, for the City and County of Philadelphia. In 

this department Dr. Hewson was pre-eminent, and the result of 

his labours as embodied in the reports of this committee exhibit 

a model in this sort of investigation well worthy of imitation. 


As a practitioner of medicine and surgery, Dr. Hewson was dis- 
tinguished for sound discrimination and caution in his diagnosis, 
and for his extensive knowledge of the resources of the medical 
art. He was thoroughly conversant with Materia Medica and 
Pharmacy, and kept himself informed of the improvements which 
are constantly making in the applicability of remedial agents to 
disease. Unlike many of the veterans of the old school, he was 
actively alive to the improvements unfolded in the march of dis- 
covery, and laborious in investigating their real merits. Few men 
combined in a greater degree the learning and knowledge of the 
past, with the acute observation of passing events. In the later 
period of his life the counsel of Dr. Hewson was frequently sought 
by the younger members of the profession in difficult cases, and 
in no man was their confidence more fully established. In con- 
sultation he was a strict observer of all the forms and rules of 
propriety adapted to these occasions; punctual in his appoint- 
ments, frank and decided in the expression of his opinions, but 
never overbearing and self-opinionated. So strict was he in observ- 
ing the rules of propriety in his intercourse with his medical bre= 
thren, that he was looked to by common consent, as an arbiter in 
all matters of professional etiquette. 

He has left to the younger members of the profession a bright 
example of virtue, probity, and unwavering devotion to the inter- 
ests of the medical calling, to which they may well aspire. To 
have been in active practice for more than half a century, and to 
have sustained during this whole period the character of an emi- 
nent and able physician, and then to pass away from the stage of 
action surrounded by a new generation who had grown up around 
him, and looked up to him with a profound respect, is a destiny 
which rarely falls to the lot of the physician. 

The College of Physicians at a recent meeting passed the follow* 
ing resolutions in relation to this event, and appointed Dr. Frank- 
lin Bache to prepare a biographical memoir of the deceased. From 
the high character of his biographer we have no doubt that ample 
justice will be done to the memory of this estimable physician-— 

Resolved, That it was with profound regret the College learned 
the melancholy fact of the decease of their late revered President 
Thomas T. Hewson, M. D. 


JResolved, That the demise of this gentleman, who was not less 
distinguished by his attainments in medicine, in literature, and 
in science generally, than by the amenity of his disposition, the 
urbanity of his manners, and the uprightness of his entire life, is 
an event deeply to be deplored by the members of this institution, 
with which he was connected during forty-six years, and over 
whose deliberations he presided for the last twelve years. 

Resolved, That a Fellow of the College be appointed to prepare 
a memoir of our late President, to be read before the College. 

Resolved, That a committee be appointed to prepare a letter 
expressive of the condolence of this College with the family of the 

Signed: Charles D. Meigs, 

Henry Bond, 
D. Francis Condie. 

On motion, it was Resolved, That Dr. Franklin Bache, be re- 
quested to prepare and read before the Fellows of the College at 
his earliest convenience a memoir of our late lamented President, 
Dr. Thomas T. Hewson. 

Death of Jacob Randolph, M. D. 

Died, on the 29th of 2nd mo. (February,) Dr. Jacob Randolph, 
Professor of Clinical Surgery in the University of Pennsylvania; 
one of the Surgeons of Pennsylvania Hospital. 

Dr. Randolph's private career as a surgeon and clinical teach- 
er commenced with his election to the post of surgeon to the Penn- 
sylvania Hospital, as successor to Dr. Hewson, in the year 1835. 
Having enjoyed the advantage of intimate intercourse with his 
father-in-law, Dr. P. S. Physick, during the latter part of the life 
of that eminent surgeon, Dr. Randolph's mind was well stored 
with that kind of knowledge which can not be derived from books 
alone. Participating in the thoughts and actions of the distin- 
guished masters of our art, the mind becomes, as it were, insensi- 
bly directed into the same channel, and to some extent, moulded 
into the same character. This intercourse, it is believed, contri- 
buted in no small degree, in fitting Dr. Randolph for the high re- 
sponsibilities which he afterwards assumed, and in the discharge 
of which he sustained himself with so much ability. Although not 
originally educated for a physician, his success in the profession 
of his choice, fully justified the wisdom of his selection, and he 
was acknowledged among the most distinguished surgeons of the 


country, and at the time of his death was exercising a wide influ- 
ence in this department of science. Though a bold and fearless 
operator, he was cautious in the formation of his opinions, and 
never rushed into difficult or dangerous procedures without urgent 
necessity, or without having first counted the cost. As a clinical 
teacher Dr. Randolph was eminently practical. Without being 
eloquent or flowery in his style, he expressed himself with great 
clearness and fluency, seizing the important points of a subject 
and en r orcing them with a distinctness and conciseness which im- 
parted great value to his instructions. There was no attempt at 
a display of learning, no laboured analysises of the intricate de- 
tails of the subject in hand, but a plain straight-forward, practical 
statement of his own views, based upon observation and experi- 
ence. Dr. Randolph was especially distinguished for the zeal 
and industry with which he took up the new operation of litha- 
trosy, and for the unrivalled success with which he practised it. 
His fame as a lithotrotist was rapidly extending over the country, 
and he was resorted to from all parts of the Union, for the per- 
formance of this difficult and delicate operation. At the time of 
his death he was in the fifty-second year of his age, and in the 
height of a useful and honourable career, and his demise is most 
sensibly felt by a large circle of friends. The following resolu- 
tions relative to the death of Dr. R. were adopted by the College 
of Physicians of Philadelphia: 

Resolved, That the College of Physicians deeply deplore the 
loss it has sustained by the demise of its late Fellow, Dr. Jacob 
Randolph, whose attainments, practical abilities, and worth, placed 
him in a position of merited eminence in our profession. 

Resolved, That the condolence of the College be offered to the 
family of the deceased in their bereavement, and that a copy of 
these resolutions be forwarded to them as a mark of the respect in 
which he was held by his brother practitioners. 

Resolved, That a Fellow of the College be appointed to pre- 
pare a biographical account of the deceased, to be read before the 
College and deposited among its archives. 

Signed: George W. Norris. 

John Bell, 
F. Bache. 

On motion, it was Resolved, That Dr. Norris be requested to 
prepare a biographical notice of the late Dr. Randolph to be read 
before the College. 


Death of John S. Condict, M. D. 

We take from the Trenton State Gazette of the 6th instant, the 
following notice of the death of another distinguished physician — 
Dr. John S. Condict, of Hudson County, New Jersey: 

We regret to hear of the sudden death of Dr. John S. Condict, 
of Hudson County, yesterday morning, of erysipelas in the head. 
This intelligence will be received with sorrow by many persons in 
this State by whom the deceased was respected and beloved. He 
was an amiable courteous and educated gentleman, of much intel- 
ligence, rare kindness of heart and great rectitude. 

Dr. Condict was the first representative of the County of Hud- 
son in the House of Assembly. He was thence transferred to the 
Senate, and continued there until the fall of 1843. At home he 
filled many places of trust and usefulness. Possessed of a large 
fortune, and being always ready to do services to others, he was 
charged with many duties of no importance to himself but of con- 
sequence to the community in which he lived. He attended to 
them all industriously, and discharged them with the utmost fideli- 
ty. Of sterling integrity, he never courted popularity; and grew 
in the esteem of his fellow men only by his independent, yet 
amiable zeal to do right. Such men are rare in every communi- 
ty and when they die, they leave a blank not soon filled. 


This is the name of a new adhesive plaster recently introduced 
into surgical practice by the profession of Boston. It is a solu- 
tion of gun-cotton in pure sulphuric ether. That cotton may be 
rendered soluble by ether, was originally demonstrated by Pro- 
fessor Shonbein, the discoverer of its explosive property, when 
subjected to the joint action of nitric and sulphuric acids, in defi- 
nite proportions. It was afterwards employed as a varnish, by 
Dr. Charles T. Jackson, and S. L. Bigelow, of Boston, and by 
the latter gentleman, we believe it was first used as an adhesive 
application to wounds, where union by the first intention was de- 
sired. It may be applied by means of a camel's hair pencil to the 
surface surrounding the wound, and a piece of muslin drawn tight- 


[y over the part, with the effect of keeping the edges in contact, 
for a much longer time (it is asserted) than by the ordinary 
method | it not being affected by moisture. Where the incision 
is slight, and the edges readily approximated, it is said that a 
thick coating of the article over the wound, and for some distance 
around it, will, by its strong adhesive property, keep the parts in 
apposition without the use of a bandage, till their continuity is 
entirely restored. If it should be desirable to watch the process 
of healing, the cut may be covered with a thin and transparent 
substance, as oiled silk, or tissue paper, and be at all times ex- 
posed to view, without removing the dressings. 

It is cheap, and may be conveniently carried in a small vial. 
We have used it in the case of a deep incised wound several inr 
ches in length, and found it to answer the same purpose as the 
common sticking plaster. It is suggested that it may be success- 
fully applied to leech-bites, burns, excoriations, chilblains, sore 
nipples, &c. In such cases it may be used in the same manner as 
a liniment, its adhesive property being developed, as its ethereal 
particles evaporate on exposure to the air. It is further recom- 
mended as a means of rendering paste-board splints impervious to 
moisture, or as a substitute for starch and dextrine in imparting 
firmness to bandages applied to a fractured limb. It may be ob- 
tained we presume, of most of the druggists, and is well worthy 
of a trial. 


In a few weeks the Annual Meeting of the New Jersey Medi- 
cal Society will be held at New Brunswick. At that meeting, 
the District Societies will be represented: let the delegates be 
instructed as to the opinions and wishes of the members of the 
profession in their respective neighbourhoods, upon the important 
questions to be laid before them. It will be recollected that last 
year the " subject of licensing candidates" was referred to a com- 
mittee, with instructions to report at the approaching meeting. 
This appointment arose from the fact that there existed a differ- 
ence of opinion among the censors in a certain section of the State, 


as to the requirements of the by-laws in this matter. It is desi- 
rable that unanimity should mark whatever movement may be 
made in its behalf, and we trust that the delegates will allow their 
interest in it to be awakened beforehand, that the Society may act 
promptly and judiciously. 

Another interesting enquiry submitted by the Standing Com- 
mittee, was, whether members of the Society may " maintain pro- 
fessional intercourse " with those " licensed practitioners " who 
have abandoned the system which they were licensed to practice, 
but who still hold the diploma granted them by the Medical Socie- 
ty, as a cloak for their empiricism; thus being, so far as their «w- 
thority is concerned, legal physicians, but recreant in their prac- 
tice to the principles of sound medical philosophy. This, together 
with the question how far members of our Society "may humour 
the prejudices of their patients and their friends in favour of false 
systems of practice," will likewise form the subject of a report of 
a special committee. It is probable also that our delegates to the 
National Medical Association will have returned from Baltimore, 
by the time of the Annual Meeting, which, with the important ob- 
jects noticed above, will make it an occasion of unusual interest. 


We are happy to find that the suggestion we made in the last 
number of the Reporter, upon the subject of a biography of New 
Jersey Physicians has been heeded by correspondents in both ends 
of the State. We trust that still further researches may be made, 
and that the names and services of many worthy physicians who 
have now gone to their final rest, may be rescued from oblivion, 
for the benefit of their successors. There is no class in the com- 
munity who live more for others, and who are more spent in the con- 
stant work of active, though it may be, unnoticed benevolence, than 
physicians; and none who endure more toil, hardship, and priva- 
tion, with so little recompense. By a little industry we may be 
able to collect and preserve memoirs of those who have gone before 
us in the profession, the value of which we cannot now estimate. 



Within a few hours a singular case of malformation has come 
under our observation. We attended a female in her second con- 
finement. Her labour was easy and natural. The offspring was 
a male child of the following description. Head and trunk well 
formed, and of natural size; feet turned inwards, forming that 
variety of club-foot termed by surgeons talipes varus; the hands 
rested on the breast just under the clavicle, the elbow joint being 
permanently bent so as to throw them in that position; one hand 
was divested of its thumb. From the edge of the concha-auris 
on the left side was suspended upon the cheek a small pear-shaped 
body above a quarter of an inch long. There was no anus; the 
hips presented a uniform surface, without the natural division, 
and just above the junction of the spinal column with the sacrum 
was a small tubercle about the size of a pea, which could be ele- 
vated a few lines on one side. The genital organs were strangely 
developed, and most curiously misplaced. The scrotum rested 
upon the arch of the pubis above, and underneath was the penis, 
an inch and-a-half long, with its dorsum directed to the right thigh, 
and the urethra to the left; the prepuce was drawn backwards 
over the glans, and the latter remained uncovered. The child 
breathed for about twenty minutes after birth. The placenta was 
readily removed, and the mother is doing well. 




New Jersey Medical Society — Samuel H. Pennington, M. D., 
of Essex; Joseph Fithian, M. D., of Gloucester. 

District Medical Society of Burlington — Zachariah Read, 
M.D., of Mount Holly; Samuel Woolston, M. D., of Vincentown. 

The attention of the delegates is invited to the following reso- 
lutions passed at the last meeting of the National Medical Associa- 
tion. The information contemplated in the first, may be commu- 
nicated to Dr. Stille, Philadelphia; or to Dr. Dunbar, Baltimore. 

Resolved, That the delegates of every society or association 
represented in this body, be requested to send to the secretaries 


the form of organization or act of incorporation, and constitution 
of their society or association, with a list of its members. 

Resolved, That the delegates to this Convention be requested 
to ascertain as far as practicable, and report to the next annual 
meeting, the number of practitioners of medicine in their respec- 
tive states — designating the number who may have received a di- 
ploma from a medical college, the number who may have been 
licensed by a medical society, and the number who practice medi- 
cine without any authority whatever. 


The New York Academy of Medicine, which comprises two 
hundred and sixty-one active resident fellows, has appointed the 
following gentlemen to represent it in the American Medical As- 
sociation, viz: 

Doctors, J. R. Manly, Isaac Wood, J. R. Wood, R. Watts, Jr., 
A. H. Stevens, F. Campbell Stewart, H. D. Bulkley, F. N. John- 
ston, A. C. Post, W. Parker, C. R. Gilman, Thomas Cock, J. C. 
Cheesman, S. P. White, J. A. Swett, J. H. Griscom, W. H. Van 
Buren, G. Carter, J. W. Francis, J. G. Pond, J. K. Rodgers, 
Charles D. Smith, Thomas F. Cock, J. G. Adams, J. R. Van 
Kleek, and Benjamin Ogden. 

The New York State Medical Society: 

Doctors Dyer, Loomis, Augustus Willard, John McCall, P. H. 
Hard, S. Sprague, Robert G. Frary, Druisneade, Darius Clark, 
Naudaine, Delatield, Gordon Buck, Beadle, Purple Maltly Strong, 
Alexander Thomson, H. Burnell, George W. Bradford, Enos 
Barnes. — Buffalo Medical Journal, 


The Massachusetts Medical Society: 

The Counsellors of the Massachusetts Medical Society, at their 
meeting in February, 1848, voted to send fifty delegates to the 
meeting of the American Medical Association, to be held in Bal- 
timore in May, 1848. They made choice of the following gentle- 
men to compose that list:— Drs. A. L. Peirson, Salem; George 
Choate, do.; Joseph Reynolds, Gloucester; Asahel H. Wildes, 
Ipswich; Jeremiah Spoftbrd, Bradford; Rulus Longley, Haverhill, 
John Green, Worcester; Edward Flint, Leicester; C. W. Wil- 
der, Leominster; Stephen Batchelder, Royalston; S. C. Hartwell, 
Southbridge; J. W. D. Osgood, Templeton; Joseph Sargent, Wor- 
cester; Royal Fowler, Stockbridge; Robert Worthington, Lenox; 
Benj. Barrett, Northampton; S. W. Williams, Deerfield; Paul 
Spooner, New Bedford; Lyman Bartlett, do.; P. L. Nichols, 
Kingston; Aaron Cornish, Falmouth; E. W. Carpenter, Chatham; 
Wm. Bridgman, Jas. M. Smith, Springfield; J. C. Dalton, Elisha 
Huntingdon, Lowell; Nehemiah Cutter, Pepperell; Josiah Bart- 



lett, Concord; J. Wellington, W. Cambridge; Horatio Adams, 
Waltham; Simon Whitney, Framingham; A. B. Adams, Bedford ; 
Joshua Green, Groton; Hiram Hosmer, Watertown; J.O.Green, 
Lowell; A. R. Thompson, Charlestown ; Jeremy Stimpson, Ded- 
ham; Eben. Alden, Randolph; Henry Bartlett, Roxbury; Edward 
Jarvis, Dorchester; Elisha Fearing, Nantucket; Z. B. Adams, 
John Jeffries, Wm. J. Walker, Winslow Lewis, J. V. C. Smith, 
D. H. Storer, Alex. Thomas, Ezra Palmer, M. S. Perry, Martin 
Gay, H. J. Clark, H. I. Bowditch, Henry Dyer and Henry Bryant, 
Boston. — Boston Medical and Surgical Journal, 


Medical Society — Drs. B. H. Coates, C. Morris, Bell, Bridges, 
Ashmead, Reese, Emerson, Warrington, I. Parrish, West. 

College of Physicians — Drs. Hays, Jackson, Bond, Condie, Fox, 
A. Stille, Pepper, King, J. R. Paul and C. D. Meigs. 

Jefferson Medical College — Professors Huston and Pancoast— 
Medical Examiner, 


Medical College of Ohio — Professors Harrison and Locke. 

Medico-Chirurgical Society of Cincinnati — Drs. J. P. Harrison^ 
William Judkins, J.F. White, James Lockey and L. M. Lawsou, 

On the 11th instant this body met at Lancaster; it was well at- 
tended, and was an occasion of much interest. A Constitution for 
the organization of a State Medical Society was adopted, officers 
elected, and delegates appointed to attend the ensuing meeting of 
of the National Medical Association. The best feeling prevailed, 
and the interest felt in this important movement promises well for 
the future prospects of the new Society. It adjourned to meet at 
the same time next year in the city of Reading. 

University of Pennsylvania — Matriculants 508, Graduates 174. 
Jefferson Medical College, — Matriculants 480, Graduates 178. 
Pennsylvania Medical College. — Matriculants 99, Graduates 40. 

We have not received the catalogues of the Franklin College, 
or of the Philadelphia College of Medicine. 


Pennsylvania Hospital. — We are happy to announce that the 
vacancy made by the death of the late Dr. Randolph, has been 
supplied by the election of George Fox, M. D., as Surgeon to this 

Franklin Medical College. — Thomas F. Betton, M. D., has 
been appointed Professor of the Principles and Practice of Sur- 
gery in this Institution, to supply the vacancy made by the re- 
signation of C. C. Van Wyck, M. D. 

Successor to Liston. — Professor Syme, of Edinburgh, ha9 
been invited to take the Chair of Surgery at University College 
Hospital, London, to supply the vacancy occasioned by the death 
of Professor Robert Liston. Professor Syme was Liston's pupil. 

Faculty of Medicine of Paris. — Professor Orfila, Dean of the 
Faculty of Medicine of Paris, has been removed from his office by 
the Provisional Government, and Professor Bouillaud appointed in 
his place. 

|C7»We have received an unusual number of introductory lec- 
tures by Professors in the various Colleges of Philadelphia, New 
York, and Ohio, but have declined giving them an extended no- 
tice, not being able to do justice to them all, and not wishing to 
be thought invidious by reference to a part only. We have also 
received Professor Pancoast's Charge to the Graduates of the Jef- 
ferson Medical College, and Professor Grant's Valedictory Ad- 
dress to the Graduates of the Medical Department of Pennsylva- 
nia College. 


The Body of Dieffenbach. — It is stated that the body of the 
late Dr. Dieffenbach showed no signs of decomposition at the end 
of nine days, but rather presented the appearance of profound 
sleep. Under the impression that recovery might take place, the 
body was constantly watched by two physicians, who were ready 
to render assistance should any signs of life appear. The Ger- 
mans, we believe, are very cautious about interring persons not 
absolutely dead. — Western Lancet, 




An Act relating to the registry and returns of births, marriages, 
and deaths , in the State of New Jersey* 

1. Be it enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the 
State of New Jersey, That the clerks of the several townships in. 
this state shall, annually, in the month of June, transmit to the 
Secretary of State of this state, a certified copy of their record of 
births, marriages and deaths, which have occurred within their re- 
spective townships, during the year next preceding the first day 
of said month; the births shall be numbered and recorded in the 
order in which they are received by the clerk; the record of births 
shall state, in separate columns, the date of the birth, the place of 
birth, and the name of the child, (if it have any) the sex of the 
child, name and surname of one or both of the parents, occupation 
of the father, residence of the parents, and the time when the re- 
cord was made; the marriages shall be numbered and recorded in 
the order in which they are received by the clerk; the record of 
marriages shall state, in separate columns, the date of the mar- 
riage, the place of the marriage, the name, residence and official 
station of the person by whom married, the names and surnames 
of the parties, the residence of each, the age of each, the condi- 
tion of each, (whether single or widowed,) the occupation, names 
of the parents, and the time when the record was made; the deaths 
shall be numbered and recorded in the order in which they are 
received by the clerk, the record of deaths shall state, in separate 
columns, the date of the death, the name and surname of the de- 
ceased, the sex, condition, (whether single or married,) age, occu- 
pation, place of death, place of birth, names of the parents, dis- 
ease or causes of death, and the time when the record was made. 

2. Jind be it enacted, That the township clerk of each town- 
ship, or some person duly authorized by him, shall, annually, in 
the month of May, ascertain from actual inquiry or otherwise, all 
the births which have happened within such township, during the 
year next preceding the first day of said May, together with the 
facts concerning births, required by the first section of this act, 
and shall make a record thereof, and file the same with the papers 
of such township, on or before the last day of said May; and the 
said township clerk, or other person authorized by him to make 
such returns, shall be entitled to receive from the treasury of 
such township, five cents for each and every birth so returned. 


3. And be it enacted, That every justice, minister, and clerk 
or keeper of the records of the meeting wherein any marriages 
among the Friends or Quakers shall be solemnized, shall make a 
record of each marriage solemnized before him, together with all 
the facts relating to marriages, required by the first section of this 
act; and each such justice, minister, clerk or keeper shall, be- 
tween the first and tenth days of each month, return a copy of the 
record for the month next preceding, to the clerk of the township 
in which the marriage was solemnized; and every person as afore- 
said, who shall neglect to make the returns required by this sec- 
tion, shall be liable to a penalty often dollars for every such ne- 
glect, to be recovered by action of debt, with costs of suit, before 
any court of competent jurisdiction, for the use of the township to 
whose clerk such returns ought to have been made. 

4. And be it enacted, That each sexton, or other person having 
the charge of any burial ground or cemetery in this state shall, on 
or before the tenth day of each month, make returns of all the 
facts required by the first section of this act, connected with the 
death of any person whose burial he may have superintended dur- 
ing the month next preceding, to the clerk of the township in 
which such deceased person resided at the time of his death, if 
such death happened in this state; and such sexton or other per- 
son shall be entitled to receive from the treasury of the township 
to which such return is made, five cents for the return of each 
death made, agreeably to the provisions of this act. 

5. And be it enacted, That the clerk of each township shall 
be entitled to receive from the treasury of such township five 
cents for the record of each marriage and death; provided, such 
clerk shall, in all respects, faithfully perform his duties under 
this act. 

6. And be it enacted, That the Secretary of State of this state 
shall prepare and furnish to the clerks of the several townships in 
this state, blank books of suitable quality and size, to be used as 
books of record, according to the provisions of this act, and also 
blank forms of returns, as herein before specified, and shall ac- 
company the same with such instructions and explanations as may 
be necessary and useful; and he shall receive said returns and pre- 
pare therefrom such tabular results as will render them of practi- 
cal utility, and shall make report thereof annually to the legisla- 
ture, and generally shall do whatever may be required to carry 
into effect the provisions of this act; and for the faithful discharge 
of his duties under this act, he shall be entitled to receive annu- 
ally, the sum of fifty dollars, to be paid by the Treasurer, on a 
warrant produced to him signed by the Governor, or person ad- 
ministering the government of this state. 

7. And be it enacted. That any clerk who shall neglect to 
comply with the requirements of this act, shall be liable to a pen- 
alty often dollars, to be recovered by action of debt, with costs 


of suit, before any court of competent jurisdiction, for the use of 
the township where such neglect shall be proved to have existed* 
8. Jind be it enacted, That the clerk of the common council 
or board of aldermen of any incorporated city or borough in this 
state, when such city or borough shall extend to and include the 
limits of an entire township, shall perform the same duties, re- 
ceive the same compensation, and be liable to the same penalties, 
as are by this act provided in respect to the clerks of the several 
townships in this state; and that in construing this act, the word 
«' clerk," meaning thereby the town clerk of any township in this 
state, shall be deemed and taken to include and mean the clerk 
of the common council or board of aldermen of any incorporated 
city or borough as aforesaid; and the word " township" shall be 
deemed and taken to include and mean any incorporated city or 
borough as aforesaid. 

9. And be it enacted, That this act shall take effect from and 
after the first day of June next. 

Approved at Trenton, March 3d, 1848. 


Extract from a " Summary of, and Observations upon the medi- 
cal practice of the New York Hospital, in the months of July, 
August, and September, 1847. By John H. Griscom, M.D., at- 
tending physician." 

"The treatment of this disease was based upon the idea of its 
proximate cause being mainly a vitiated, deficient and innutri- 
tious condition of the blood. I say mainly, because 1 have no 
particular theory as to the real nature of the disease, whether pro- 
duced by a specific poison entering the system from without, as 
is maintained by some, or by a partial decomposition of the blood 
by others, or by a disorganization of the solids by a third party, 
etc. The most important point in my estimation to be considered, 
being its treatment, I have been disposed to look chiefly at its re- 
mote causes, and to endeavor to ascertain from a contemplation of 
them, what is required to overcome their effects. 

" The remote causes are two in number: 1st, an insufficiency 
of food, and 2d, the inhalation of a vitiated air. The first of these 
must necessarily produce an exhausted nutritive condition of the 
blood; — that fluid, under a protracted privation of nutriment, will 
not only be diminished in quantity, but its red globules, it is rea- 
sonable to suppose, will become deficient in number and in those 
properties which are believed necessary to the health of the organ- 
ism. Both these consequences are aggravated and increased by 


the second cause; for in the atmosphere of the steerage of a pas- 
senger ship, crowded to the utmost limit of the iaw, there must 
necessarily, one may easily believe, be not only a deficiency of 
oxygen, but an actual presence of other gases, whose chemical ac- 
tion upon the blood cannot but be deleterious, depriving it still 
further of its healthy properties. 

" I may be told that this brief view of the causes and character 
of ship fever is insufficient to account for the febrile symptoms,— 
that there is nothing in starvation, or want of oxygen, or the pre- 
sence of deleterious gases, to produce fever. If any one who 
should raise this objection to the insufficiency of my position will 
tell us what fever is, I might then be able to discover a connection 
between it and the causes I have named. Until the specific nature 
of fever is demonstrated, it is in vain to argue about the nature of 
its causes, or to endeavor to trace the modus operandi of -the in- 
fluences which are supposed to produce it. But if we are to un- 
derstand by fever, the frequent pulse, hot skin, thirst, etc., etc., — > 
then I answer, that ship fever, as it has been presented to us this 
year, is in very many instances, not a fever at all. Repeatedly 
have we seen patients brought from on ship board without a sin- 
gle symptom of fever; with pulse below the natural standard, skin 
moist and cool, fauces not dry, no thirst, and yet the body cover- 
ed with petechias, the eye congested, the senses benumbed, and 
most of the other symptoms of the typhus conditio?!. 

" Confining our attention to this simple view of the causes of 
ship fever, we find little else to do than to counteract their effects. 
The means for this are clearly indicated, and may be classed un- 
der three general heads. 

" 1st. To maintain the continuity of the body, and sustain its 
nervous energy, by stimuli, until we are enabled, 

"2d. "To improve the quantity and character of the blood by 
appropriate nourishment; and 

" 3d. To oxygenize the blood thoroughly by pure air. 

" For the first indication, after giving a warm bath, (an invaria- 
ble rule where it could be borne,) the most powerful and direct 
stimulants were found necessary. Brandy and carbonate of am- 
monia constitute the main reliance; and during my attendance I 
have been astonished to observe what enormous quantities of these 
remedies will be borne in this disease. As an instance, I may 
mention the case of a girl about 15 years of age, who took about 
5 pints of brandy eve/y day for 5 days, and for two weeks longer 
from 2 to 3 pints daily. At the same time she was takin°- 10 
grains of carb: ammonia every 15 minutes, amounting to two 
ounces in twenty-four hours, besides soups and other nutriments. 
And all this without the least manifestation of excitement, or in- 
jury to the stomach or bowels, such was the intensity of the dis- 
ease. She was under this treatment nearly three weeks, before 
^ny very decided symptoms of improvement were manifested; un~ 


fortunately, before time eiapsed to observe the ultimate result in 
this case, and just as she was beginning to feel the good effects of 
the treatment, the patient had to be discharged f relieved, 5 being 
removed from the hospital by her parents. Many other cases 
might be cited, in which it was necessary to continue, night and 
day, to ply these remedies unceasingly; — a very short respite was 
frequently sufficient to put the patient back decidedly, and a vast 
number of the cures were undoubtedly due to the faithfulness with 
which these means were applied. Where the circulation was un- 
usually languid, or the extremities were cold, sinapisms and arti- 
ficial warmth were very valuable. 

"To answer the second indication, the patients were fed at fre- 
quent intervals with nutritious soups, arrow root, or gruel, with 
wine or brandy, milk punch, egg-nog, beef, chickens, etc., etc. 

"Upon the third indication, pure air, I may remark, that on 
several occasions the necessity for it was strongly marked. The 
pressure for admission several times became so urgent, that the 
bounds of prudence were quite overstepped, as was indicated hy 
the fact that in certain of the wards which were most crowded, 
and contained the worst cases, the recoveries became more pro- 
tracted, and the relapses more frequent. It became necessary to 
close two of the wards in the north building, and to have them 
thoroughly cleansed and purified. After this operation, and upon 
confining the number of patients in them to a reasonable limit, a 
decided improvement was manifested in the rapidity of recoveries, 
and convalescence. The position of a patient's bed in a ward, 
was observed to have an influence over his treatment. In the cor- 
ners of the rooms, the patients got along more slowly than in the 
central parts, or near the doors or windows; — and I frequently 
found that when a patient had been lying for several days, in a 
part of a ward most distant from the windows, and was not doing 
well, a removal of his bed right under a window would, in 24 
hours, produce a decided change in the symptoms for the better. 

" Although this was the general course of treatment, it was fre- 
quently varied to suit the condition of the patient. Occasionally 
a case would present a degree of excitement, with hot and dry 
skin and thirst, which called for the spirit. Mindereri, ice in the 
mouth and to the head, and the mildest diet; sometimes gastric 
irritation with nausea would demand a mild emetic, such as an 
infusion of euper: perfol. If the pain and heat in the head were 
marked, dry cups to the temples, or forehead, or blisters behind 
the ears, and application of ice, would generally be found suffi- 
cient. Pneumonic symptoms with cough frequently complicated 
the case; when these occurred, Stoke's expectorant, with dry 
cups, or vesication of the chest, formed the principal addition to 
the other treatment. 

"Sometimes there would occur such a combination of general 
prostration and external heat and dryness, as to indicate a com- 


bined stimulant and febrifuge treatment; such, for example, as 
the administration of carb: ammon: or a half ounce of brandy, al- 
ternately every hour or two hours, with a half ounce of spirit: 
Minder: and so frequent and sudden were the changes, in many 
instances, from one condition to the other, an almost constant 
watching was necessary to withhold the one or the other, and 
again resume it. In fact, the varieties and shades of symptoms 
were almost infinite, and called for an endless variation in the 
means of relief. To enumerate them would take more time and 
space than could be reasonably asked. There were many cases, 
however, for which no other treatment was necessary than good 
diet and cold water. Cleanliness, pure air, and food, appeared 
all-sufficient for the removal of the disease, even in the well-mark- 
ed cases, not a particle of medicine being administered to them." 


Read before the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, March 7, 
1848," by Isaac Parrish, M. D. 

Early after the discovery of the remarkable property of ether, 
in annulling pain, it was suggested that its use might be extended 
with advantage, to a large class of nervous diseases, the nature 
and treatment of which are still involved in obscurity. 

Amongst these, one of the most important, is tetanus, a malady 
of the most terrific character, and in the larger proportion of cases, 
totally beyond the reach of auy method of treatment yet dis- 
covered. Within the past year, several cases of this disease have 
been reported in the English and French Journals, in which the 
inhalation of ether has been employed, with variable results; in 
several it is said to have aggravated the spasms, and to have 
hastened the fatal issue, while in others, it has produced a tempo- 
rary alleviation of the symptoms, without arresting the progress 
of the disease, and in two cases it is supposed to have promoted 
a cure. 

Not having had access to the detailed history of these cases, I 
am not aware of the particular stage of the malady, in which the 
inhalation was resorted to, or of the extent to which it was carried. 

When administered in the incipient stage of the disease, and be- 
fore the spasms become general, it would seem, a priori, to afford 
us a valuable means of allaying the constitutional irritation, which 
is the precursor of tetanus, and thus of averting the attack. 

Under these circumstances, it was employed in a recent case, 
which I attended in consultation with my friend Dr. Alexander 
Hart, and which it is proposed now to report to the College. It 
will be remarked that in this case, the tetanic symptoms were pre- 


ceded by decided evidences of their approach, and that they were 
gradually developed, thus affording us a fair opportunity of inter- 
posing remedies; had the disease been suddenly induced, and had 
it spread rapidly over the system as it sometimes does, the result 
might not have been so happy. The case however furnishes an 
important illustration of the value of this remedy, under circum- 
stances where the most powerful anodynes taken into the stomach, 
failed to induce sleep, or to allay restlessness, at a time when the 
production of this result was all important to the safety of the 

Every surgeon who has seen much of tetanus, must have re- 
cognized that singular state of the nervous system, which general- 
ly precedes the spasms; a state in which there is an impressibility 
to the actions of stimulants and anodynes, the patient is anxious 
and restless, his pain, which may before have been severe, has 
left him, and yet he cannot sleep; very soon he complains of a 
little stiffness in the back of the neck, and protrudes the tongue 
with some difficulty; then follows an occasional twitch in the in- 
jured part, with a shoot of pain up the limb, extending perhaps 
to the opposite side, with flatulence and colicky pains; if these 
symptoms be not speedily relieved by appropriate remedies, it is 
well known that general tetanic spasms will ensue, which becom- 
ing more and more frequent and violent, destroy the patient. 

The practice usually recommended under these circumstances, 
is to promote action in and around the wound, by the application 
of irritating poultices or ointments, and to control the nervous ir- 
ritation. To accomplish the latter indication, various means have 
been resorted to, amongst which, the administration of opium in 
some of its forms, stands most prominent. Too often, however, 
this powerful medicine fails to produce its peculiar effects, even 
in the largest quantities, and the disease proceeds on unchecked. 
Now, it is in this condition, that the inhalation of ether would 
seem to offer us a new, ready, and more powerful means of ac- 
complishing the desired result, and in the case which I have the 
pleasure of reporting to the College, its effects in this particular 
stage of tetanus were certainly most happy, tending to arrest the 
progress of the disease, by suspending the spasms, and promoting 
repose; thus placing the nervous system above the influence of the 

Case. — Louis Hettenhausen, a German cabinet-maker, aged 
about fifty years, was attacked with severe pain in the index finger 
of the right hand, on the 20th of the first mo. (January) last. He 
supposed that he had been pricked by a splinter, and picked at 
the finger in order to get it out, but could find nothing. The pain 
steadily increased, and he complained of chilliness which affected 
him during the whole night. On the morning of the 21st, Dr. 
Hart was called to visit him; found considerable inflammation and 
swelling in the finger, with red streaks running along the course 


of the absorbents, on the back of the hand and fore-arm; the pain 
was excessive. Dr. Hart directed a full dose of calomel and 
opium, with ley poultice to the finger, and laudanum fomentations 
to the hand and arm. The pain not being relieved in the course 
of a few hours, after Dr. H.'s visit, a medical friend of the patient, 
under the impression that it was a paronychia, made a free inci- 
sion into the finger with a scalpel, without the discharge of matter, 
and with very little bleeding. No relief followed this operation, 
and the pain continued violent during the whole of the day and 
night, notwithstanding the patient took laudanum. 

On the 22d, there was swelling of the limb, and a greater degree 
of inflammation along the line of the absorbents, on the back of 
the hand and arm, with appearances of commencing gangrene 
in the finger. The bowels had been freely opened, the tongue 
was furred, and the pulse, soft and compressible. Dr. Hart di- 
rected a continuance of the poultice and fomentations, with twenty 
drops of black drop every four hours. On the morning of the 
25rd, I was requested to visit the patient in consultation. The 
hand and arm were now greatly swollen, to some distance above 
the elbow, the pain was very severe, and the patient had been 
without sleep from the commencement of the attack. The tongue 
was heavily coated, and there was entire loss of appetite, with a 
soft, compressible pulse, and copious sweats. The finger was 

A lotion of equal parts lead-water and solution of opium was 
advised to the limb, and Kentish ointment to the finger; the arm 
was enveloped in a blister above the inflammation, and the patient 
was placed upon small doses of blue mass, with twenty drops of 
acet: opii: every four hours, with nutritious drinks. 

On the 24th, there was no improvement; the gangrene of the 
finger was complete; swelling of the arm and hand had increased, 
without fluctuation at any point; the inflammation had extended 
above the blister. 

The patient had slight, short naps through the night, without 
refreshing sleep. Free cauterization with nitrate of silver, above 
the inflamed surface was resorted to. Porter was advised to be 
taken freely, and a decoction of the oak bark to be applied in 
wetted cloths to the limb. Quinia 2 grs. every four hours, and 
black drop, twenty drops every three hours. 

25th. Inflammation had not extended above the cauterized 
line; tumefaction of the limb, very great up to the elbow; a line 
of demarcation formed above the second joint of the finger; less 
pain in the limb; fluctuation distinct on the back of the wrist. 
General symptoms not improved; patient cannot sleep, and sweats 
copiously; pulse more feeble, countenance pallid and anxious^ 
has had no refreshing sleep since the begiuning of the attack. A 
free opening was made through the integuments at the fluctuating 
point, followed by a discharge of thick, yellow matter, in small 


quantity; anodyne continued in same close every two hours. 
Directed milk punch instead of porter. In the evening there was 
no improvement; though the patient had taken the black drop 
regularly, he had not slept; there had been during the day, several 
attacks of pain, extending up fhe limb to the muscles of the side 
of the neck, and shooting along the course of the lower jaw to the 
ear. The patient though accustomed for many years, to the daily 
use of a small portion of brandy, had taken the most decided aver- 
sion to it, and could with difficulty, be induced to take the punch. 
He also had a disgust for food of any kind ; pulse soft and com- 
pressible; bowels constipated; no stool produced from blue pill. 
The comp. tinct. of rhubarb was now directed, with a continuance 
of the quinia, milk punch and black drop, every two hours. 
Another opening was made through the integuments, on the back 
of the fore-arm, from which pus issued. 

26th. Less pain in the limb, with more tumefaction, and but 
little discharge; patient feels better, though he cannot sleep; bears 
pressure on the limb, and moves it about without pain; decided rigi- 
dity of the jaws, and difficulty in protruding the tongue; shooting 
pains occasionally, along the course of the jaw back to the ears, 
and a feeling of something being in the ears. Bowels still consti- 
pated, with occasional colicky pains, which we attributed to the 
action of the rhubarb; had sweat profusely during the night; pulse 
more feeble, and about ninety in the minute; coldness of feet; has 
no inclination for food, and rejects the brandy; has taken the black 
drop regularly every two hours. 

Red precipitate ointment was applied to the fingers and back of 
the hand; comp: tinct: of rhubarb continued; and a table-spoonful 
of Huxham's tinct: of bark in a wine-glassful of milk, given every 
two hours, in place of the quinia and milk punch. Morphia in 
camphor water, | gr. every two hours, was substituted for black 
drop; essence of beef, by the spoonful, for nourishment. 

In the evening there was no improvement; patient has had se- 
veral copious stools during the day, preceded by sharp pain in the 
bowels; sweating copious, no appetite, pulse feeble, great restless- 
ness, with little steady pain, occasional shoots up the limb to the 
neck and jaws; stiffness at the back of the neck and rigidity of 
the jaws, with precordial oppression. Same treatment continued, 
with tiie addition of enemata of assafoetida and laudanum in broth, 
every four hours. 

27th. Patient much in the same state as yesterday; no sound 
sleep, occasional short naps, from which he would start up with 
pain in the finger and arm; several copious, dark, thin and offen- 
sive stools during the night, great sweating, intellect perfectly 
clear, no steady pain, but great distress and restlessness; wishes 
himself dead, &c; limb tumefied, but a decided diminution in the 
inflammation and discharge, bears handling and squeezing at the 
orifices of the openings without complaint. Rigidity of jaws, and 


shooting pains cominue; quantity of morphia increased, and assa- 
foetida injections continued, with nourishment, aromatic spirits of 
ammonia given in addition to other remedies. 

In the evening, the danger of general tetanic spasms was more 
imminent than at any previous period. The patient had experi- 
enced during the day several severe shoots of pain, from the mor- 
tified part, up the limb to the back of the neck, and down to the 
pectoral muscle of both sides of the body, with increased stiffness 
of the neck and rigidity of the jaws; all the local symptoms were 
relieved. There was no pain in the limb, and very little discharge 
from the openings, with great restlessness and depression of 
spirits; he could not sleep, notwithstanding the constant use of 
powerful anodynes for several days past; the bowels continued 
free, and the discharges were becoming exhausting; he had colicky 
pain and no appetite. 

At this juncture it was suggested that we should try the inhala- 
tion of sulphuric ether. A sponge saturated with this article was 
placed in the hand of the patient, and he was directed to inhale 
freely; in about five minutes, the hand which grasped the sponge 
relaxed, and he fell into a pleasant slumber. This continued for 
about two hours and a half, when he awoke with pain and rest- 
lessness, and again asked for the sponge, which he applied in the 
same way, with a similar result, and had another nap of the same 

28th. This morning Dr. Ashmead joined us in the consulta- 
tion. The whole aspect of the patient manifested great improve- 
ment ; five hours comfortable sleep had steadied the nervous sys- 
tem, and there had been no return of the spasms during the night; 
the opening of the jaws was still attended with pain, though the 
rigidity was less; the bowels had not been opened, and the colicky 
pains had ceased. The patient this morning, for the first time 
since the attack, took nourishment with an appetite. The condi- 
tion of the limb had not materially altered, except that it was more 
sensitive to the touch. Huxham's tincture of bark and paregoric, 
a desert spoonful of each, were directed every two hours, with 
beef tea, porter, &c; spirits of camphor was applied to the limb, 
and a sinapism to the spine, with directions to resume the inhala- 
tion of ether if pain or spasm should recur. During the day he 
had occasional snoots of pain up the limb to the shoulder and side 
of the neck, but not so violent and frequent as heretofore. The 
medicine and nourishment had been retained, and the constitu- 
tional symptoms had decidedly improved. He was directed to 
inhale the ether at bed time, and to repeat it, if necessary, as on 
the previous night, and to take small portions of nourishment at 
short intervals when awake. 

29th. This morning we found the patient not so well; counte- 
nance more anxious; he had passed a restless night, and had ex- 
rienced several severe paroxysms of pain in the limb, extending 


to the neck, but not to the other side; the hand and fore-arm were 
more painful, but the discharge of pus from the orifices was more 
copious; the inflammation was accurately defined and more acute. 
It was found on inquiry that the quantity of ether employed during 
the night was not sufficient to produce the desired effect; the at- 
tendants having neglected to have it replenished. A resort was 
had to the inhalation several times during the da} r , with happy 
effects, the patient having enjoyed several refreshing sleeps after 
the inhalations without manifesting any previous excitement. A 
spasm of the muscles of the jaw coming on this morning while the 
patient was attempting to gape, and preventing the closure of the 
mouth for a few moments alarmed him greatly, but the spasmodic 
pains in the limb during the day were much less frequent. The 
patient took nourishment with appetite, and was evidently improv- 
ing. At bed time the ether was directed as on previous occasions. 

30th. Had passed the night without severe pain, and had slept 
comfortably most of the night, after inhaling the ether at bed 
time; countenance, pulse, and skin all favorable; jaws relaxed; 
pain in inflamed surface severe on motion or handling; healthy 
granulations forming around the gangrenous portion of the finger: 
free purulent discharge from openings at the back of the hand and 
arm, and around the granulations in the finger; the cellular tissue 
under the integument was completely destroyed in those parts at- 
tacked by the inflammation. From this period, the improvement 
of the patient slowly progressed, without any farther appearance 
of alarming symptoms, and in due time the finger was removed. 

The chief interest attached to the case, (which was one of ordi- 
nary phlegmonous erysipelas) is derived from the fact, that the 
inhalation of ether acted the part of an anodyne, where the prepa- 
rations of opium had failed to produce an impression, and when 
tetanic symptoms had set in. It is worthy of remark, that the 
ether here produced no excitement, or delirium, or nervous agita- 
tion of any kind as it sometimes does when administered to healthy 
individuals; but it simply induced sleep, which was prolonged for 
several hours, and appeared to be natural and refreshing. 

How far the action of this potent agent is modified by the pecu- 
liar morbid conditions of the nervous system in which it may be 
given, has not yet been tested to any considerable extent. We 
know that the powers of opium and alcoholic stimuli are thus 
modified, and in no disease have we a better illustration of the fact 
than in tetanus. May not anaesthetic agents be influenced by 
similar laws? 

New and successful method of treating Prolapsis Jlni. By Dr. 
Hake. — The method consists in returning the bowel or hemor- 
rhoidal tumors with great care after the daily motion; in assisting 
its return by means of soap lather; in applying a coil of moist 


sponge firmly upon the anus, and, while retaining it there with 
one hand, bringing the nates together by means of a broad strip of 
adhesive plaster, as on approximating the edges of a wound. 

This method Dr. Hake has now tested in several cases; it has- 
never failed of success. 

[The following is extracted from a letter from a patient who 
first put the plan to trial, and by whose ingenuity it was first con- 

" Take a piece of sponge four or five inches long, an inch and 
a half wide, and half an inch thick, the more elastic the better; 
roll this, in a damp, but not wet state, pretty tightly, so that the 
roll, if relaxed, would be ready to spring back into its full length, 
and it would then make a roll of some little substance, round, but 
still soft, and its length, when thus rolled, will of course be an 
inch and a half. Apply it, then, lengthwise, to the anus, so that 
it may be pressed about the centre of it, quite home and firmly to 
the part. Taking care that it may remain so, stretch a length of 
adhesive plaster, about 14 inches long, and three and a half wide, 
more or less, straight across the nates, rather low down, and con- 
trive so that while the plaster adheres on one side, you press the 
other side closer to its opposite, before you fix the length finally 
where it is to remain. Then sit down, at first gently upon it,, 
and it will become very firm and fast, so long as the plaster is 
good. These two pressures constantly going on, do the work 
without any inconvenience worth speaking of; I mean the roll of 
sponge always striving to unwrap itself, and the cross-band of 
adhesive plaster always keeping it from doing so by holding the 
nates sufficiently close together. The working is perfect with a 
little use and management. I never put this on until I am going 
about, or to take exercise, whether walking, riding, or driving. 
In the evening I take oft' the plaster, but leave the sponge in its- 
place, where it has got by that time so firmly fixed by gradually 
spreading and swelling, that there is no danger that anything 
short of great exertion will loosen it, and it is of course more 
comfortable to do without the plaster when it is not wanted. The 
sponge should be washed in cold water every time it is taken 
oft', and in cold weather the plaster should just cross the fire be- 
fore it is put on; in moderately warm weather it will adhere of 
itself, especially if it is sit upon for half a minute. The same 
plaster is better the second day than even the first,, and will do 
even the third, where economy is an object. Wash the parts 
where the plaster goes, every morning or oftener, with water, or 
water and vinegar,, and the skin will never suft'er. If the plaster 
leaves something sticky behind it, when it is taken off', rub it with 
a very little spirit of wine, and the towel will remove it. 

" If there be an irritation about the anus or the gut that comes 
down, wash it with vinegar and water, and the relief will be won- 


derful, and that part of the evil soon cured. This wash cannot 
be too much praised for this purpose, for piles, and the like " — - 
London Medical Gazette.— British American Journal of Medical 
and Physical Science. 

A case of Eclampsia Parturientium, or Puerperal Convulsions, 
By Thomas McGown, M. D., of Hillsborough, Mississippi. 

Mrs. S. aet. 45, temperament lymphatico-nervous — had given 
birth to 14 children, and one miscarriage — was delivered about 3 
o'clock, a. m., Sunday, Nov. 21st, of a female child — labor lasted 
about one hour and a half, and very painful,-— attended by a ne- 
gro servant as midwife. About 9 o'clock the infant was applied 
to the breast for the first time. Mrs. S. has since stated, that soon 
after it was applied to the breast, she had pain in the stomach., 
tinnitus aurium, apparently saw a great many lightning-bugs in 
the corner of the house. A fit now came on, attended with clonic 
spasms, chin drawn towards left shoulder, and other phenomena 
of epileptic fits. A boy was now started after me, (distance near- 
ly eight miles.) After my arrival 1 learned the above; and also, 
after an interval of, perhaps little more than an hour, another fit 
came on, which lasted about 40 minutes. More than an hour 
after the subsidence of this fit, and soon after I entered the room, 
a third one commenced, which was very severe indeed, and 
threatened dissolution. It lasted about SO minutes, and was suc- 
ceeded by a state of mania, lasting about 20 minutes; during 
which she said many foolish things, — indicating complete aberra- 
tion of mind. After this maniacal condition passed off', her sys- 
tem was very much relaxed, attended by a state of stupor or coma, 
stertorous breathing, and a hissing sound. After a time I aroused 
her, and administered one and a half teaspoonfuls tinct: opii, a 
little sulph: ether, in half a tea-cup of water. More than an hour 
after this— gave a dose composed of sulph: quinine, 8 grs., calo- 
mel, 10 grs., radix rhei pulv: 10 grs. There was an interval this 
time of about two hours and a half: during which she appeared to 
be doing tolerably well, except pain in stomach, and hurting of 
encephalon, which had been the case in all the intervals of fits. 
Then came a fourth fit, which was shorter and milder than any 
of the others; and this and the two first were not succeeded by 
the maniacal condition, as was the case after the third fit. It was, 
however, followed by stupor. After a time, I aroused her, and 
gave a dose of sulph: quinine, 8 grs., tinct: opii, 40 min. Four 
hours after this, gave a dose of sulph: quinine, with a little sulpha 


22d, 7 o'clock, a. m. — Was informed about a double handful 
of clotted blood came away from the womb this morning. Ad- 
ministered a dose of sulph: quinine, 8 grs. radix rhei pulv: lOgrs. 
Repeat the same every 4 hours ; at bed time add sulph: morphia. 

23d, — Spent a pleasant night, having slept a goodly portion of 
it. Sulph: quinine and radix, rhei. pulv., administered four times 
during the day, with addition of pulv: Doveri at 9 o'clock, p. m. 
Complained of soreness of encephalon, body, limbs and tongue, — 
the latter having been bitten (bruised) a little during the fits, 
though measures were used to prevent it. 

24th, — No operation from bowels yet. Sulph: quinine contin- 
ued. Child again applied to the breast this morning, which was 
followed by pain or hurting of stomach, and blindness for a few 
moments. At 3 o'clock, p. m., ordered oleum ricini, Siij, and xx 
min: oleum, terebinth., which produced dejectio alvina in reason- 
able time; this being the first one since her confinement. 

She continued to improve — feeling sore all over for several 
days, as though she had been beaten with a stick. 

I should have remarked, that her pulse, soon after each fit was 
over, was about 95, hard and contracted, — during fits less fre- 
quent and not so hard. She had haemorrhoids, — and during labor, 
prolapsus of rectum was induced, making a considerable tumor, 
which was oiled for a time and returned. 

Her mental faculties were much impaired for several days; 
having no recollection of many things that transpired the first 
day or two after parturition, and but an indistinct one of many 

December 1st. — Saw her again: — Was informed that she had 
done well, with the exception of pain and tenderness \n lower por- 
tions of dorsal region, pain sometimes running half way to ster- 
num, (dorso-intecostal neuralgia.) Ordered sinapism, or flannel 
dipped in hot ol: terebinth, to tender part of spine. Sulph: qui- 
nine, and carb: ferri internally, and being costively disposed, or- 
dered aperients of different kinds, — pro re nata. Nourishing diet 
in small quantities at a time was allowed during the whole course 
of treatment. 


Remarks. — The above case occurred in one of the wealthiest 
families in the county, and as has been seen, requiring prompt 
and decided treatment. Believing the treatment as recommend- 
ed by authors, improper and unsafe in this case, — and without an 
opportunity of consultation, made it quite a responsible situation 
indeed, in which i was placed. Guided, however, by my own 
views of the case, which I believed to be consistent with the true 
principle of medicine, I proceeded to treat it as above stated. 

With due courtesy to authors and my superiors in the profes- 
sion, I believe this is one disease that is almost always improperly 
treated by them. I think the profession should re-investigate and 


profoundly consider the nature and treatment of this affection, an 
opinion which is much strengthened bj the great mortality of these 
diseases — about one in four proving fatal in Eclampsia Parturi- 
entium, according to authors. 

Professor Dunglison informs us that some cases of these con- 
vulsions are decidedly hysterical; others more of an apoplectic 
character; " but the convulsions, which are most frequently met 
with and seriously complicate the parturient state, are epilepti- 
form." Professor D. further remarks; — " In numerous examina- 
tions that have been made of those who died during the existence 
of this form of convulsions, no alteration whatever was found in 
the condition of the encephalon;"— and says: "the affection would 
appear to belong unequivocally to the neuroses.'' 9 It appears 
somewhat surprising in this advanced age of medical science, that, 
without regard to the peculiarities of any particular case, we are 
told by one of the greatest compilers of the day: — " Whatever 
may be the condition of the encephalon in this alarming affection, 
almost all writers appear to be agreed, that our hopes of safety 
must rest on diminishing the amount of the circulating fluid," &c, 
and that blood should be taken in a full stream, &c. It has been 
said by Professor Meigs, that, "it is scarcely worth while, almost, 
to open a vessel to draw off eight or twelve ounces of blood. The 
patient ought to lose from thirty to sixty ounces at one venesec- 
tion, if possible." Some have advised bleeding from the jugular 
vein. It is also said it may be necessary to repeat the bleeding 
again and again; and that but little nourishment should be allowed. 
I am disposed to question this sweeping generalization. Do we 
not know that large and repeated abstractions of blood, (especi- 
ally in some cases,) are calculated to bring on convulsions; or that 
condition we should be endeavoring to combat ? 

This affection is classed by nosologists with the neuroses; and 
Professor Dunglison says it is most frequently epileptiform. Do 
we not know that powerful antiphlogistic treatment is not required 
for this family of diseases, nor even tolerated with impunity ? — 
Yet we see Professor Meigs, and others, resort to it most heroi- 
cally. And when such is the treatment, need we be surprised at 
the great mortality, — or if they survive would we not naturally 
expect dangerous or obstinate sequelae. Professor D. says, " Con- 
tinued ill health is apt to follow puerperal convulsions; and much 
care on the part of the practitioner is demanded, to avert many 
evil affections, which are amongst their sequelse. " This we might 
reasonably expect, where the system receives a severe shock, or 
much injury during the convulsions; but might not many of them 
be averted, or ameliorated, by the plan of treatment which I have 
suggested ? I am not disposed to doubt that venesection is pro- 
per in some cases— especially in eclampsia gravidarum,-— those of 
full habit, or sanguine temperament; but believe it is too dog 
matically taught, without regard to the peculiarities of each ease. 


and too indiscriminately practiced, — hence, perhaps, one cause of 
its seriousness, and great fatality. 

I wish it particularly borne in mind, that in the above case, 
venesection was not resorted to: and had I drawn " thirty to sixty 
ounces of blood at once," the patient would in my humble opinion, 
have succumbed. 

I think it might be safely supposed, that the short and painful 
labor debilitated the system so much, that it was placed in a con- 
dition for the encephalon to sympathise with the matrix through 
the reflex nerves, and that on the line of this concatenation, a por- 
tion of the medulla spinalis sustained injury, as was manifest from 
the subsequent pain and tenderness in lower third of dorsal region. 

Believing that the practice recommended by authors, is, at least 
to some extent, wrong and dangerous; I feel it my duty to the 
profession and to humanity, to suggest what may be of much inte- 
rest to both; — and should I meet with a case that required vene- 
section I should not hesitate to administer sulph: quinine, and 
sulph: morphine afterwards. 

There are a great many opinions about the modus operandi of 
sulph: quin. We know that it exerts a powerful influence on the 
nervous svstem. In large doses, it acts as a tonic and sedative: 
perhaps its sedative effect is, at least to some extent, in conse- 
quence of its tonic influence. It appears that many physicians at 
the north do not understand the cases in which this great remedy 
ought to be administered, or they give it in too small doses; (in 
the ship fever in Philadelphia Dr. Turnbull gave " quinice sulphas, 
in pills of one grain, three times a day." See Med. Examiner, 
or Western Lancet & Med. Lib. vol. vi. no. 4, p. 239.) while 
some at the south go to the other extreme — giving it in very large 
doses — from fifty to sixty grains and more.* 

It is highly important in the practice of medicine, that extremes 
be avoided. Nothing is here intentionally said, respecting de- 
livery of the foetus prior to, or during parturition. This paper has 
already been extended beyond what was intended at the outset. — 
Western Lancet. 

The Nature of General Shields' Wound. — This gallant 
soldier has recently been the guest of our city, and we were cal- 
led upon to dress his second wound: being detained, we found our 
friend, Dr. Dugas, in attendance when we arrived. It is known 
that General Shields was wounded twice in the recent battles in 
Mexico. By the discharge of a cannon at Cerro Gordo, he was 

* Dr. R. S. Holmes, Med. Staff U. S. A. says: "A patient at the north 
takes one or two grains almost daily for weeks. The largest dose he has 
given (in Florida) at a single dose, has been eighty grains. (See Ame, 
Jour, Med. Sci. for October, 1846, pp. 297, 304. 


shot through the body and given over as certain to die. The 
General thinks it was a grape shot that traversed his chest. The 
balls had evidently passed between the lungs, through the medi- 
astinal entering within the right nipple, and passing out near the 
spine on the right side. He spat no blood, did not fall, and even 
gave the word of command after being wounded. In a few mo- 
ments he was in indescribable agony, and even prayed for death, 
to be relieved! 

None but a medical man can fully appreciate the nature of this 
wound, which has no parallel on record. — Southern Medical and 
Surgical Journal, 

Obituary Record. — Died, January 29th, of Typhus Fever, 
caught in the discharge of his professional duties, Dr. Joseph Bell, 
one of the most distinguished medical practitioners of Edinburgh. 
Dr. Bell was the youngest son of the late Dr. Benjamin Bell, the 
Liston of his day, one of the most celebrated operators and prac- 
tical surgeons that Scotland can boast of. His mother was a 
daughter of Professor Hamilton, who filled with distinction the 
Chair of Divinity in the University of Edinburgh; so that by pa- 
rentage, as well as by professional celebrity and personal labours, 
the name of Dr. Bell has long been intimately connected with the 
medical renown of the Scottish metropolis. — Medical Neivs. 

Amputation during Spreading Gangrene. — [Extract of a let- 
ter to the Editor from U. S. Thomas, M. D., of Longview, Tenn.] 

In reading the review of the work of Chelius, in the January 
Number of the Journal, I discover that I can furnish a fact bear- 
ing on a dispute between that author and his translator, Mr. South, 
which is at your service. Some years back, a Mr. Garner, while 
driving a wagon, was thrown from his horse and dragged some 
distance, producing a compound dislocation of his ankle, and a 
slight fracture of the end of the tibia. The parts were adjusted, 
but mortification took place. When it had reached the knee, and 
was still progressing, Drs. Cooper and McDaniel, of Clarksville, 
were called in consultation. The whole of the thigh was emphy- 
sematous, and supposing that it indicated commencing gangrene, 
we were much embarrassed in coming to a decision. We supposed 
that, the mortification would be fatal if not arrested, and doubted 
the propriety of cutting through a part with incipient gangrene. 
We finally concluded that the circumstances justified amputation. 
The limb was removed above the knee, and the man recovered 
without a bad symptom. — American Journal of Medical Sciences. 






Report of the Standing Committee, for 1848, . . . 249 

" from the Western District, by Richard M. Cooper, M. D. 258 

*" from the Middle District, by Samuel Lilly, M. D. . 260 

" from the Eastern District, by Alexander N. Dougherty, M. D, 263 

" of Delegates to the American Medical Association, . 270 

History of the Medical Society of New Jersey, by J. B. Munn, M. D. 276 

Minutes of the eighty-second Anniversary, . . . 286 


A case of Chronic Gastritis with its post-mortem appearances, by 

David B. Trimble, M. D. ., ... 290 

Singular case of Abscess in the left hypochondrium, by William 

K. Mason, M. D. . . . . . 294 

Remarks on the bearing of some modern doctrines of Pathology 
and Animal Chemistry in the treatment of Tubercular Con- 
sumption, by E. J. Marsh, M. D. . . . . 296 

Etherization in Delirium Tremens, by the Editor, . . 298 


Constitution and By-laws of the New York Academy of Medicine, 

with a list of Officers and Fellows. New York, 1848, . 302 

Proceedings of the State Medical Convention held in Lancaster, 
1848, and Constitution of the Medical Society of Pennsylva- 
nia then adopted; published by order of the Convention, 1848, 303 

By-laws adopted by the Managers of the New Jersey Lunatic 
Asylum at Trenton ; also, the act to provide for the organiza- 
tion of said Asylum, and for the care and maintenance of the 



insane, passed March 23, 1847 : and the supplement to ^said 
act, passed March 9, 1848. . . . .304 

Report of the Select Committee of the House of Representatives 
of the United States, " to whom was referred the subject of 
imported adulterated Drugs, Medicines, and Chemical pre- 
parations," ....... 305 


Our first volume. . . . . . . 309 

American Medical Association, . . . . . 310 


Death of Isaac S. Haines, M. D. . . . . 311 
Obituary Notice of Alexander Ross, M. D., by Zachariah Reed, M. D. 313 

" " David Brainard Greenman, " 313 

" ' " John Ross, M.D. " " 313 

" " Stacy Budd, M. D. " " 313 

" " John Brognard, M. D. " « 314 

«■ " Benjamin S. Budd, M. D. " " 314 

« « John L. Stratton, M. D. " " 314 

Death of Nathan W. Cole, M. D. .... 315 


Medical Progress. 

Abstract of the proceedings of the American Medical Association 

at their meeting in Baltimore, May, 1848, . . . 316 

Colica Pictonum, by James H. Johnson, M. D., one of the physi- 
cians and surgeons of the St. Louis Hotel for invalids, . 323 

Remarks on Chronic Diarrhoea and Dysentery, by Thompson 

McGown, M. D. of Hillsboro, Miss. . . . . 32T 

A Bill to prevent the importation of adulterated and spurious 

drugs and medicines, . . . . , . 330 

Lunar Caustic, for cough, . . . . .332 


Alexander N. Dougherty, M. D., on Homoeopathy. 
Samuel Woolston, M. D., on Fracture of Os-Femoris. 
Henry Hartshorne, M. D., on Dissecting Wounds. 
Charles D. Hendry, M. D., on Epilepsy. 
N. W. Cole, M. D., on Spontaneous Evolution of the Foetus. 
Silas S. Brooks, M. D., on Endemic Fever of Philadelphia. 

" " " on Constipation. 

Elias J. Marsh, M. D., on Hemorrhage from the Umbilicus. 

" " '« ' on Tubercular Consumption. 

J. B. Warriner, M. D., on History of Chloroform. 
N. W. Condit, M. D., on Fracture of Cervix-Femoris. 
David B. Trimble, M. D., on Chronic Gastritis. 
William K. Mason, M. D., on Hypochondriac Abscess. 


The New York Annalist, the Medical Examiner, and Ameri- 
can Journal of Medical Sciences, have not been received. 



VOL. I. SEVENTH MONTH, (JULY,) 1848. No. 4. 


Report of the Standing Committee, to the President and mem- 
bers of the iVew Jersey Medical Society. 

Gentlemen — By reference to the proceedings of the last Annual 
Meeting of the Society, we find the question of deciding upon the 
propriety of professional intercourse with empirics and other ille- 
gal practitioners, was referred to the Standing Committee, for 
their examination and opinion. 

In accordance with the above reference, we would respectfully 
state, that we consider the subject one of grave import, one de- 
manding consideration and reflection. If under the term empi- 
rics, we class every practitioner that has not complied with the 
strict letter of our law, the decision would be easy; but unfortu- 
nately, throughout the length and breadth of the state there are 
many medical men who in by-gone years passed through the re- 
gular periods of study, submitted to an examination from legal 
Censors of New Jersey; and who, for longer or shorter periods 
were orthodox practitioners, but from insufficient success, or a 
desire for novelty, abandoned their first love, and became Homoeo- 
pathists. These individuals still shelter themselves from prose- 
cution and fine under their licenses, and by virtue thereof collect 
their dues and demands. They are (generally speaking) classi- 
cal men, moral, virtuous citizens, and with the exception of having 
adopted a most absurd theory and mode of treating disease, still 
deserving the right hand of fellowship. How far we are justified 
in making them an exception to nostrum manufacturers and ven = 


ders, Thomsonians, Hydropathists, &c, &c, is, as above men- 
tioned, a question of grave import. If, in these cases, aberration 
from orthodoxy is the effect of a morbid desire of change or novel- 
ty, we may hope, their judgments (after the pleasure imbibed from 
the transition) shall (like every thing else under the sun) wax old, 
be renovated, the scales fall from their eyes, and reason and com- 
mon sense once more sway them. Under such anticipations we 
think guarded medical intercourse will be advisable, and may in- 
fluence their restoration to the pale of the orthodox church. 

Your committee would therefore recommend a line of distinc- 
tion to be drawn in our intercourse with them, Homceopathists and 
other empirics who have never subscribed to our laws. In all 
other cases of illegal practitioners, your committee cannot too 
strongly inculcate perfect non-intercourse — their name is legion, 
and like the scrofulus tubercles of the lungs, corrode and de- 
stroy the vitality of the whole system. 

So long as a law regulating the practice of medicine adorns our 
statute books, so long it is our duty to obey its enactments. If 
we evade it in one instance, we may with equal propriety, in 
all; and thus destroy its utility in toto. If the law is erroneous 
and burthensome, let it be repealed. If the people are injured in 
their health and property by its observance, they have the power, 
and can annihilate it. 

In tolerating Homceopathists to the extent suggested, there is no 
law violated, no enactment vitiated. Our observations are intend- 
ed to bear upon New Jersey Homceopathists, who have anteri- 
orly been Alleopathists, and in becoming so have fulfilled all our 

Homceopathists, beyond the pale of our church, are to all intents 
and purposes illegal practitioners; and therefore amenable to the 
same kind of non-intercourse as Thomsonians, or nostrum vend- 
ers, deserving and demanding from us similar exclusion. These 
are our views, and as such we respectfully submit them. 

We cheerfully coincide with the view taken by the Reporter of 
the middle district, in suggesting the appointment of Reporters 
for every county, and your committee think such by-laws should 
be enacted as to cause each of these Reporters to transmit their 
reports to the chairman of the Standing Committee, on or before 


the first of April in each and every year: this regulation will ena- 
ble the general Reporter, i. e. the Chairman of the Standing Com- 
mittee to prepare his document, call a meeting of his associates, 
and submit it to them for examination and modification. 

Your committee are of opinion that some more effective plan 
should be formed for the examination of students. As the Cen- 
sors are now appointed, their intimate connection with their re- 
spective district societies and participation in the business of the 
meetings, so occupies their time, as to render the organization of 
their board impracticable before afternoon; leaving the interven- 
ing time between that and night entirely too short, (more espe- 
cially if several candidates offer) to examine them in each of the 
branches of our profession designated by the law. 

Your committee would suggest an alteration in the day speci- 
fied for the meeting of the Censors, or the appointment of Censors 
unconnected officially with the district societies. The day se- 
lected for the meeting of the Censors might be the same all over 
the state, and by fixing it on a day different from that on which 
the district societies held their annual meetings, the one difficulty 
would be obviated. 

Again, your committee would likewise recommend a suitable 
provision or remuneration to be made to each Censor for his ser- 
vices, and that he be requested to devote more time in examining 
the respective candidates in all the designated branches of the 

Your committee would likewise recommend the society to take 
under its especial care and attention, some respectable Medical 
Journal, or purchase the New Jersey Medical Reporter, now pub- 
lished at Burlington: and if that cannot be effected, to ascertain 
by a committee (to report at the next annual meeting,) the expe- 
diency of commencing a second medical work. The committee 
had not the slightest intention of retarding the circulation or in- 
juring in any mode the one now extant; on the contrary, it was 
with the most delighted feeling they saw its primary annunciation, 
anticipating the hour (long since passed) that we too, "Jersey 
Blues," might boast of having written a book: and may we be 
permitted, Mr. President and fellow members, to congratulate 
the whole profession, as well as our association, on having secured 


a denizen in our midst, and a medical brother who has executed 
the task with gratification to us and honor to himself, and we 
would respectfully call the attention of our medical brethren 
through the length and breadth of the state, thereto. 

Your committee believes the day has arrived that will (with the 
society's aid) justify the publication of one large Quarterly Medi- 
cal Review, as large as " Hay's Journal of the Medical Sciences," 
or two of smaller calibre, similar to that now so agreeably and 
satisfactorily emanating from Burlington. Whichever of the 
plans deliberate judgment may select, we think an alliance with 
our medical pioneer, would not only strengthen his press and cer- 
tainly detract nothing from ours — on the other hand, enhance its 
usefulness and benefit. 

Your committee most sincerely congratulate, not only the soci- 
ety, but the community at large, on the prospect presented in all 
sections of the state, for the improvement and advancement of 
medical science; it speaks language that must gladden the heart 
of every philanthropist. 

The brilliant galaxy of legitimate science is rapidly dispersing 
the fogs and mists of ignorance and credulity; and the idea once 
very generally cherished, that our State society was a Hydra, 
branching through every section of the state, for the sole purpose 
of enriching ourselves at the expense of the people, is rapidly be- 
coming obsolete. 

The medical horizon is, we flatter ourselves, comparatively 
calm and serene; the whole circle of the heavens but partially ob- 
scured, it is true the reckless boldness of the empirics, their in- 
defatigable efforts to nullify all philanthropic exertions, vilify and 
blacken every legitimate discovery, gives a dark, gloomy and 
portentous aspect to the future: but experience has taught us 
however dark may be their aspect, they are " vox et prseterea 
nihil' 1 * — sound; false assertion, and impious declamation only — 
they may whistle for a while, but are rapidly passing away. 

However cheering the prospect before us, we must be on the 
watch for tempests and convulsions — politicians tell us that eter- 
nal vigilance is the only safeguard of liberty; and experience pro- 
claims for the prevention of empiricism, the preservation of health 
and strength, sound medical skill and science is needed, which 

Report of standing committee. 253 

can only flow from pure, upright and intelligent physicians; the 
moment the medical man's time and attention is solely directed 
to individual aggrandizement, his usefulness is diminished, and 
he will sooner or later fall a victim to his selfish purposes. 

The sentiment once cherished, of our society being organized 
to enrich its members, by united pressure on the people, was the 
most unfortunate and inhuman man could invent. 

"A little learning is a dangerous thing, 
"Drink deep or touch not the pierian spring." 

The knowledge of our society being incorporated without in- 
vestigation of the motives of that incorporation, verified the lan- 
guage of the poet — had the inquiry been pursued its just length, 
the real motive, the philanthropy that formed its basis would have 
been displayed and a different, far different result would have 
been seen. 

Whilst we are (as in duty bound) endeavouring to enhance the 
respectability and usefulness of our profession, by inducing ille- 
gal members to become legal brethren, we cannot too strenuously 
inculcate (amongst ourselves) that strict attention to our varied 
duties, its eminent professors have urged; to be ever ready to 
strangle in the germ, the fungous developments calculated to 
eradicate our noble science, is primary duty. At the same time 
we trust a rivalry will be displayed to prove that (now as hereto- 
fore) the most vivid pleasure of the physician and philanthropist 
will be to ameliorate and diminish the diseases and calamities of 
the human family, whenever and wherever found- 

With such views and sentiments, our forefathers attempted 
and obtained a charter for this society: for very many years has it 
passed on its course rejoicing, and the result of its organization 
has been not only an essential advantage and improvement of 
medical science, but a blessing to the citizens of this state and 
the surrounding sections of the union. 

To recapitulate and particularize the Howards that have ema- 
nated from its sanatory portals, would perhaps be invidious and 
misplaced. Our immediate object is of a different cast, and to 
that we advance. Before proceeding to remark the state and 
condition of disease manifested the past year, we would call the 


attention of the society to the adoption of some plan more efficient 
than the one now in operation, to enlarge the sphere of our pro- 
fessional knowledge and skill. Might not the respective district 
societies be urged, to forward to us after each meeting a copy 
of the address or addresses at such periods usually delivered, to- 
gether with every communication calculated to advance that ob- 
ject ? These might be placed under the revision of a designated 
committee, to select therefrom and prepare for publication. This, 
or some similar scheme, might (as your committee believe) be 
formed from year to year; and prove a useful auxiliary, to enhance 
not only scientific acquirements, but induce the public to pay 
more attention to our proceedings, and thereby acquire a more 
accurate estimate of our worth and philanthropy. 

From examination of the respective medical reports hereunto 
annexed, your committee have the gratification of proclaiming to 
their medical brethren and the citizens of the state generally, 
that the past year has been one of exemption from wide spreading 
or devastating epidemics. Endemics however, such as typhus 
or ship fever, erysipelas, roseola, pertussis, and dysentery, have in 
distinct locations and different parts been manifested; the former 
imported (as generally believed) by shipboard from Europe, has 
raged most severely in our eastern counties and seaboard, as the 
erudite reporter from that district informs us; yielding however, 
in a majority of cases to cleanliness, free ventilation, and good 
nourishing diet; this course with gentle aperients, diaphoretics, 
counter irritation, mild tonics, acidulants and chalybeates, has 
proved successful. 

In some portions of our state, erysipelas accompanied with 
typhus or nervous symptoms, has prevailed; this combination in 
our hemisphere (except in crowded cities) is unusual. 

In by-gone days erysipelas w r as almost universally accompani- 
ed with synochal symptoms, demanding the most active depletory 
and refrigerant remedies; and so uncommon is the association 
above named in our rural locations, as to cause very many that 
h ! ave been interrogated on the point, to state their ignorance of its 
nature or character, except the information deduced from authors 
who have been recently introduced to the unpleasant stranger, 
and in consideration of these facts, your Chairman will observe 


that in near half a century's extensive country practice he can- 
not call to mind a solitary case decidedly typhoid, demanding 
corroberants tonics and antiseptics. 

The report from the Western district, marked No. l.,as first 
received, and hereunto annexed, contains a graphic and lucid de- 
tail of the various diseases prevailing in that section of the state, 
and their treatment interesting and instructive; and your com- 
mittee believe they would be doing justice neither to him, them- 
selves, or you, in abridging or curtailing it. 

The direct professional connexion of the Chairman of the com- 
mittee with the reporter of the middle district, leaves him little 
to add to the report therefrom, next in order received and like- 
wise attached. We can with pleasure endorse the details there 
narrated, and in proof of the prevailing typhoid state of the loca- 
tion or its atmosphere, state, that very many years have elapsed 
since his lancet has been so seldom called in requisition as the 
present. The committee, as in the preceding case, believing 
abridgment unjust, present the whole. 

The report from the Eastern district they leave likewise for 
your examination, believing it will not disgrace its associates, 
they tender no further observation on the trio than their delibe- 
rate opinion that each and every of them are sterling proofs of 
intellectual research and acumen, alike honorable to them as au- 
thors, as to the society of which they are members. 

The committee feel anxious for the day to arrive that will place 
these and similar medical reports, documents, addresses and 
communications before the public, and fervently hope immediate 
steps will be taken to effect it. 

In closing their report, your committee feel themselves impelled 
by both inclination and duty, to notice the serious misfortune not 
only the profession, but a large portion of the citizens of the state 
have sustained in the demise of their professional brethren and 
intimate friends, William Forman and John S. Condit, M. D's. 

At the last annual meeting of this society, the assemblage was 
benefitted and enlightened by the presence and co-operation of 
the former; one of its most respectable fellows. 

To those who had the pleasure of his acquaintance, it is unne- 
cessary to say, that his presence alone added utility, strength and 


power to the congregated body. With a mind of transcendent 
calibre, a memory of extraordinary retentiveness, and a judgment 
(to say the least of it) very far above mediocrity: he displayed 
one of those superior organizations we do not every day enjoy the 
opportunity of associating with, and gaining laurels from the in- 
terview. In whatever position chance or design placed him, he 
was at home, whether examining the student or candidate for- 
medical honor on the intricate structure of the animated machine, 
eliciting an explanation of its complicated functions, investigating 
the extent of his examinant's knowledge of the resources and bene- 
fits deducible from surgical science; diving into the modus ope- 
randi of re-productive nature — drawing out the nature, kind and 
virtues of vegetables, or the destructive character of mineral re- 
medial agents, the same capability was manifested. And when 
drawn into the extensive field of classic and literary lore, the 
same superiority was evidenced. The club of Hercules seemed 
his by natural right of possession — no faltering, no hesitation 
marked his path. It has been the good fortune of the committee 
collectively, and individually, to enjoy repeated opportunities of 
testing his exalted merit, and with perfect unanimity do they de- 
clare, that on every important subject they have satisfactorily pro- 
ved the truth of the above picture : yet with all these brilliant ac- 
quirements, with a character in every relation of life " sanspeur et 
sans rsproche" with the duties of child, husband, parent, rela- 
tive, and friend, faithfully discharged, truth and candor compels 
us to state he was of the class of unfortunates, who, with acquire- 
ments that most of us might envy, he passed through life without 
securing that independence his talents and qualifications demand- 
ed, and added to the truth of that melancholy aphorism that suc- 
cess and merit are too often antagonists. Peace to his remains : he 
was a shining light of New Jersey; a son whose memory should 
be cherished and revered, and in due consideration of his nume- 
rous virtues and transcendent abilities, it is suggested that the 
President of this society, in the name and by authority of the in- 
stitution, address a letter of sympathy and condolence to the be- 
reaved widow and orphans, and proffer such aid as may be deem- 
ed advisable, and that the members wear the usual badge of 
mourning, crape on the left arm for thirty days, as the bes^ evi= 


dence they can display of their affection and reverence to his 

Of John S. Condit, M. D., another of those worthy and impor- 
tant members of society, whose decease is not only a private, but 
public loss, creating a void in the community, not easily supplied, 
we cannot speak so satisfactorily as we could wish; but as a Con- 
dit. a name that has exalted the medical reputation of our state, 
we view him as a legitimate scion, and consequently possessing 
medical skill and medical acquirements of a superior grade; thus 
convinced, without the minute information of his practieal pre- 
eminence we possessed in the former case, we pass' over succinct 
detail of his career as a physician, and proceed to another and 
different theme. As a legislator and statesman, something more 
may with truth and candor be said. For two consecutive elective 
periods, your Chairman was one of his associates in the Council 
chamber of our state, during that period he had abundant oppor- 
tunity to test him, and although politically opposed to each other, 
your Chairman has the gratification of being able to state, that in 
all their intercourse the utmost urbanity and harmony subsisted 
between them. At various times his ability and talent shone re- 
splendent. Justice and candor compel me to say that I considered 
him a man of decided superior cast; the patience, shrewdness and 
tact displayed in managing his political operations, was proof 
positive of his undoubted pre-eminence. 

In all the domestic relations he shone conspicuous. Although 
associated at a moment of high political excitement, no unplea- 
sant word, no harsh epithet, ever disturbed our sociability — stran- 
gers we met, friends, sincere friends, I have reason to know we 

Satisfied of his superior virtues as a citizen, and having full 
confidence in his professional standing and reputation, your com- 
mittee believe they would be recreant to both feeling and duty, 
did they pass over in silence the departure of so worthy a friend 
and brother as the deceased — and they would recommend to the 
society the adoption of such marks of respect to his memory, as 
they in their judgment should deem just and proper. 

That the cheering prospect so agreeably manifested the past 
year may rapidlv increase, is our most fervent desire, and that 


the horizon now commencing illumination, may increase and in- 
crease until it reach meridian splendor, is the fervent wish of 
your committee, and they trust it is needless for them to add their 
readiness and determination to carry out the behests of the socie- 
ty to the utmost extent of their power and ability. 
Respectfully submitted. 

JOHN LILLY, ) a . ,. 
L. A. SMITH i p Stand . l "§ 
E- J. MARSH, S Cornmittee ' 

Since the meeting of this society the Standing Committee have 
heard of the death of Dr. Charles Smith, of New Brunswick, a 
fellow of this society and a veteran in the profession. He with- 
drew a few years ago from active professional life, with a compe- 
tence acquired by years of patient industry, successful enter- 
prise, and skillful application of professional knowledge; he was 
known to many of the elder members of the society as being one 
of the most learned and skilful members of the profession in the 
state. In his days of health and strength he was a constant at- 
tendant at our meetings, and took a warm interest in every thing 
that concerned the honor and interest of his professional brother- 


By Richard M. Cooper, M. D. 

Tne Reporter for the Western District for the present year, in 
accordance with the by-laws of the State Medical Society, pre- 
sents to the Standing Committee the following report for their in- 
formation in regard to this district. The health of the inhabitants 
as far as has been in his power to ascertain by inquiry of the prac- 
titioners residing therein, as well as by personal observation, has 
been generally good, especially during the summer. In the 
autumn fever prevailed to a considerable extent, especially along 
the shores of the Delaware and its tributary streams, wherever 


much meadow or marshy district was found, making its appear- 
ance in the latter part of August—it was almost always of an in- 
termittent character,- as the season advanced changing to the or- 
dinary remittent and bilious fever. In most cases if it was treat- 
ed early, the disease was of easy management; but if left to itself 
the intermittent form gradually ran into the remittent, and it again 
often becoming what is now called typhoid or nervous; but in no 
cases that we are aware of becoming genuine typhus, which has 
prevailed to a great extent in the narrow and ill-ventilated streets 
of some of the large cities. 

In this district the fevers were seldom fatal, and then only from 
local inflammation occurring. As far as my observations go, the 
fever was best treated by the various preparations of quinine in 
the early stages; not waiting as was formerly recommended, for a 
perfect intermission, but only for a remission, provided the skin 
was not too dry and the tongue soft and moist; in this state of the 
system, quinine in moderate doses repeated at short intervals, 
was almost always certain to interrupt the paroxysm and con- 
vert it into a simple intermittent. 

As the weather became cooler the fever almost entirely disap- 
peared, very few new cases occurring, this in some measure indu- 
cing the opinion that these fevers are of malarious origin, produ- 
ced in some way by the decomposition of vegetable matter, which 
require a degree of heat for their elaboration, higher than that of 
the latter autumnal months. 

In the early part of the Winter, measles prevailed in sporadic 
cases at first, but gradually increasing until in the immediate 
neighborhood of your Reporter it assumed the character of a wide 
spread epidemic of unusual severity, much more so than has been 
known here for a number of years. 

In most cases the principal force of the disease fell upon the 
respiratory organs, sometimes with the first symptoms, and in 
others not until the subsidence of the erruption and the patient 
seemed fairly convalescent, and had ceased to require the ser- 
vices of his medical attendant; in these cases typhoid pneumonia 
supervened of a severe and obstinate character, and in several 
cases proved fatal in young children. 

With the approach of the mild weather of Spring, a marked 


change in the severity of the epidemic was observed, which be- 
came much milder and in most cases requiring a mild treatment 
and confinement to a mild temperature in a warm room, thus dif- 
fering very materially from the cases occurring in the "Winter, 
which always required a prompt and active treatment. 

Scarlatina, that fearful and justly dreaded infantile disease, has 
prevailed in some of the towns and villages of the district, but has 
not spread over such an extended surface as it has in former 

In regard to the new discoveries and remedies in medicine, 
which according to the by-laws the Standing Committee is to ob- 
tain information, your Reporter has only to say, that the new re- 
medies, ether and chloroform, about which we see so much in the 
medical and secular periodicals, in this district so far as has been 
ascertained, but few trials have been made. 

Your Reporter is happy to inform the Standing Committee that 
in the immediate district which is under his notice, there is an in- 
creasing interest felt in the prosperity and success of the State 
and District Medical Societies; most of the younger members of 
the profession complying with the law of the state in obtaining 
licenses from the State Medical Society on commencing practice, 
and joining the Medical Societies in their respective counties, so 
that in a short time we have the prospect of seeing all the mem- 
bers of the profession regularly licensed and legal practitioners 
and members of their respective district societies. 

Camben, April, 1848. 

By Samuel Lilly, M. D. 

Your Reporter for the Middle District, in accordance with the 
by-laws of the Society, respectfully reports, that his means of as- 
certaining the state of health throughout the whole district, which 
is as you are aware, a very large one in geographical extent, have 
been limited, and therefore the report wtll embrace such facts 


only, as have come under the immediate notice of the reporter 
and the physicians by whom he is surrounded. 

In the spring of 1847, pertussis prevailed to a considerable ex- 
tent. The visitation was not an extraordinarily severe one, and 
the cases yielded to the treatment usually resorted to in the dis- 
ease, viz: anti-phlogistics, expectorants, anti-spasmodics, &c. 
This was especially true as regards the white population. In the 
colored population however, its mortality was great, hardly one of 
the graver cases yielded to the remedies used. I may say that 
three fourths of the colored children who were attacked with the 
disease died. Your reporter is unable to account for this fact 
except from the general poverty of that kind of population, want 
of proper care, cleanliness, &c, and also the greater susceptibili- 
ty to severe congestion of the pulmonary organs usually attribu- 
ted to blacks in this climate, by medical writers. Pertussis was 
succeeded by the usual diseases of early summer, viz: diarrhoea, 
cholera infantum, &c, in which no marked peculiarity was ob- 
served; the usual remedies being successful in curing the dis- 

The latter part of summer brought with it an epidemic dysente- 
ry, — a number of severe cases came under the notice of your re- 
porter. The peculiarities noticed were the typhoid character of 
the disease — tendency to sink in the earlier stages of the attack; 
bleeding being admissible in only one case which came under my 
notice. The remedies prescribed by practitioners and authors of 
standing, were used with various success, no one course appear- 
ing to possess a marked superiority. Calomel, Dover's powders, 
and laxatives being used in the earlier, and astringents, camphor, 
blisters, &c, in the later stages of the disease. Almost all the 
fatal cases I met with could be attributed to the debilitating, 
drastic, and I may say lacerating effects of purges used by the pa- 
tients before applying for medical aid. I could trace with abso- 
lute certainty the fatal character of two or more cases to the use 
of Wright's Indian Vegetable Pills, which are much in use as a 
purge, in this part of the country. Composed as they are, princi- 
pally of the harshest cape aloes, they acted as a direct poison on 
the tender and inflamed mucous coat of the large intestines, pro- 
ducing abrasion which was followed by copious hemorrhagic dis- 


charges, thus sinking the patient down beyond the power of reme- 
dial influences, immediately. 

In early autumn, remittent and intermittent fevers of a typhoid 
bilious character prevailed. These cases did not differ from the 
usual form of these diseases, except that tonics and stimulants 
were admissible in much earlier stages of the attacks, than com- 
monly prescribed. Ship fever, or contagious typhus fever, I have 
learned prevailed in some portions of the district, introduced by 
foreign emigrants, but your Reporter has had no means of learn- 
ing the peculiar nature of the disease, or the most successful 
means of combatting it 

During the winter which, was a remarkably open one, Pneumo- 
nia, Bronchitis, &c, prevailed to about their usual extent, but 
presenting no peculiarities that your Reporter is aware of, they 
are passed over. 

In the early part of the present Spring a number of cases of 
rather singular character came under the notice of your Reporter 
and his neighboring physicians, which they were induced to be- 
lieve to be inflammation of the muscular coat of the lerge intes- 
tines, complicated with hepatic derangement. The attacks were 
attended with violent pain in the hypogastric and illiac regions of 
the abdomen, obstinate costiveness, furred tongue, and a mode- 
rate degree of fever. The evacuations from the bowels which 
could with the greatest difficulty be procured, were extremely 
dark and tenacious, presenting almost the appearance of tan. The 
pian which was of a spasmodic character, was relieved by free 
purging with mercurials, together with the preparations of opium 
and camphor; this was followed by alterative doses of calomel, 
and where tenderness was detected, counter irritation by means 
of sinapisms, blisters, &c, was resorted to with beneficial effects. 
No case proved fatal, although many were very tedious in conva- 
lescing, and the patients much reduced by the disease. In no 
case which came under my notice was the use of the lancet ad- 
missible. The pulse being uniformly soft and perfectly compressi- 
ble, and the general strength of the system prostrated. 

Having thus in a very imperfect manner detailed the state of 
health of the distrist as far as I have been able to learn the same, 
it becomes my duty to speak of new remedies and discoveries in 


medicine and its collateral sciences. The periodicals of the day, 
which are in the hands of the profession, must supply the place of 
an extended report from me. Ether and chloroform as ancesthe- 
tic agents, have filled the largest space in the public eye. The 
opinions of those who have used them differ so widely that I leave 
the committee to draw their own inferences. 

In connexion with this report I take pleasure in stating, that 
an increased interest has been awakened in the profession to main- 
tain its dignity and elevate the. standard of medical acquirements 
and ethics, and to enforce the wholesome laws ot the State in re- 
lation thereto. District societies are springing up in almost every 
county destitute of them, and I trust a degree of esprit du corps 
evinced, which must lead to good results. Your Reporter would 
here take the liberty of suggesting to the Standing Committee and 
through them to the State society, the propriety of so altering the 
by-laws as to provide for the appointment of a Reporter for eacb 
county, instead of each district as heretofore. By this course 
your Reporter believes a more full, complete, and reliable report 
of the condition of the health of the state could be arrived at than 
the present. 

Lambertville, Mav 4, 1848. 

By Alexander Dougherty, M. D. 

Not having been favored with communications from my breth- 
ren in the district, I shall be obliged in this article to quote main- 
ly my own memoranda, hoping necessity may excuse its egotisti- 
cal aspect. 

During the year we have been mercifully spared the visitation 
of any wide-spread epidemic. The desolating cholera has not 
overshadowed us, nor even has influenza, its scarcely less formida- 
avant courier, crossed the Atlantic on tempest-wing, to strike 
down venerable age and lovely infancy in our midst. 

The winter and spring have been signalized in the vicinity of 


Newark, by the considerable prevalence of typhus, small-pox, 
erysipelas, and roseola. The former disease was introduced by 
immigrants, who coming out from New York immediately on 
landing, soon after sickened of ship fever. It was often obverved 
to spread through whole families, furnishing indubitable evidence 
of communicability. The treatment in use, and generally suc- 
cessful, consisted in the customary alterative cathartics at first, 
succeeded by the effervescing draught, cold sponging, derivatives 
to the extremities, ice to the head, # and opiates. The complica- 
tions which were chiefly of the head and chest, of course demand- 
ed leeches, blisters, and fomentations. Sordes, dry and black 
tongue, and debility, required the chlorate of potass, wine and 
beef-tea, which were administered with obvious benefit. 

The disease generally yielded in two or three weeks, though 
occasionally persisting six or eight. A roseolas eruption in the 
first week, accompanied nearly every case. 

Small pox has been mainly discrete or semi-confluent. In a 
family, several of whose members were attacked, I repeatedly, 
but vainly tried to vaccinate an infant, which afterwards exhibited 
only a few abortive pustules, showing peculiar inausceptibility to 
either disease. 

Erysipelas was sthenic, requiring depletion general or local. 
An alterative course of calomel, antimony, and ext: hyoscyamus, 
alternating with effercescing draughts was pursued; soon, howev- 
er changed for wine and quinine. The local applicatious were 
such as suited the fancy of the patient, whether lead lotion, de- 
coction of poppy heads, or burnt flour. In a case where the cere- 
bral complication had been severe, convalescence was protracted 
by the formation of abscesses of the scalp and eyelids. 

The duration of the disease was from one to two weeks, the 
erythema travelling down the back and gradually fading away 
near the loins. 

In two cases of phelgmonous erysipelas of the arm, deep inci- 
sions and encircling the limb with a strip of blistering plaster 
seemed to arrest the spread of the inflamation. 

I have to report the occurrence in my practice, of one of those 
rare cases in which death results from vaccination. The virus 
was procured from a perfectly healthy child whose arm had been 


no 9orer than usual, and though it was applied to many others, 
unhappy consequences attended only this. The patient was an 
infant six months old, three weeks gone in whooping cough, which 
was very mild, and uncombined with fever. 

The sore looked will until the fourth day, when it took to weep- 
ing; erythema commenced and soon enveloped the body, destroy- 
ing life after a month of irritative fever, at length producing 
diphtheritic inflammation of the throat. 

On enquiry it was ascertained that the family of the father in 
all its branches was very subject to erysipelas, and the untoward 
occurrence was laid to the account of hereditary predisposition. 

Roseola which I have mentioned in the list of prevalent dis- 
eases, was not unfrequently mistaken by the public for measles; 
from which however it varied in several important particulars, 
besides occurring in many who had passed through the latter com- 

There was little or no lachrymation and cough, the eruptive 
fever was slight, lasting only a day; the eruption consisting of 
small round distinct elevated rose-colored spots, sown pretty 
equally over a white ground, and not arranged in the crescentic 
form of measles. No treatment was necessary. 

Some months ago I extracted an incisor from the upper jaw of 
an infant of six weeks old. At birth the tooth was felt just be- 
neath the gum, and on coming through, interfered so much with 
nursing as to render its removal advisable. 

The following remarkable case of ectopia cordis will be of in- 
terest to the profession. 

Mrs. F. aged 22, asked advice relative to constant headache 
and palpitation. On examining the chest stethoscopically, what 
was my surprise to meet with the heart beating on the, right side, 
in the spot exactly corresponding to its normal place on the left. 
She stated that she never remembered a different condition— had 
never received any injury, nor been the subject of any inflamma = 
tion of the chest. Percussion gave a clear sound over the heart's 
normal location; while by the dulness it clearly defined the organ 
in its new quarters. In view of the frequent concomitance of 
malposirion ot other viscera, I explored the hypochondria, and de- 
tected the liver in the left instead of the right. 


Breschet dissected four cases in the Foundling Hospital of Pa- 
ris, where the heart was situated at the right side, without any of 
the other viscera being transposed." Otto, Moellenbrock, Mohren- 
heim, and Elvert, have likewise described this species of displace- 

Dr. Bryan records a case of transposition of the heart and other 
viscera, the specimen of which is preserved in the superb museum 
of the Dublin College of Surgeons. Dr. Kennedy reports a simi- 
lar case. 

Moliere was not aware that Sojanarelle in the play " the doc- 
tor in spite of himself," might perhaps have hit it when he allow- 
ed his patient such grotesque allocation of organs. 

The prevalence of quackery has always excited the rightful ire 
of the profession. Not simply because it diminishes proportion- 
ably the respectability and emolument of legitimate medicine, but 
unspeakably more because of its inherent wrong, and the evils 
which it entails on a credulous world. Interest and philanthro- 
py then imperatively call for efficient measures to curb and cur- 
tail, if we cannot choke it. 

The aid of law is not available, since it cannot be invoked with- 
out drawing on the head of the unlucky complainant a harrassing 
and injurious prosecution before the bar of public opinion. That 
" hydra-headed monster" with the fallacy of reason to be expect- 
ed in an animal under the control of passion, denominates every 
act of the profession in self-defence, the offspring of envy, malice, 
jealousy, and protestations to the contrary are responded to with 
sneering unbelief. " 'Tis true, 'tis pity, pity 'tis, 'tis true;" and 
as we cannot alter the fact, we should content ourselves with 
measures which have their operation in our own body. 

If we are debarred from law, let us at least be permitted by 
the public in its excess of courtesy, what it assumes itself, the pri- 
vilege of choosing our associates. Let us search out and inter- 
communicate, and through all channels send abroad every vile 
act, every contemptible subterfuge and lying pretension, every 
fatal folly and asinine error of which these vermin, crawling and 
fattening on the diseased body of society are guilty. Especially 
is it made the duty of the Reporters to observe these things, and 
hold them up to merited reprobation. 


The most successful system of charlataning in our time, is Ho- 
moeopathy. Based on nothing, nay, built of nothing, this airy 
shrine has a host of worshippers, whose adjuration is " the less 
credibility the more faith." The idea of the infinitesimal is as 
hard to conceive of, as the idea of the infinite, and this may fur- 
nish the key to the popularity of homoeopathy. 

The people professing fondness for life, great regard for skill, 
good sense and science, in those whom they entrust with their 
very breath, will nevertheless, employ men, who to leave the 
merits of their system out of question, are lamentably and glaring- 
ly deficient in the alphabet of our art — who know little of physi- 
ology, their best friend: little of anatomy, the first lesson in physi- 
cal humanity; nothing of chemistry, for they abhor compounds; 
nothing of pathology, or diagnosis, for they only deal with symp- 
toms, and nothing of surgery and obstetrics, because from long 
habit of doing nothing and leaving nature to do all, they dwindle 
(if they were ever any better) into feeble old women, they trem- 
ble at the approach of a crisis, and powerless, behold the wretched 
victim of their imbecility sweep by within grasp, toward the gulf 
of death. 

In Newark we have several homoeopathic quacks, who like 
their brethren, not content with regulating their practice by Jahr's 
Manual, that most ethereal of romances, implicitly limit then- 
knowledge by it. Dr. N , who we believe was till lately a 

dentist, and pushed out on the full tide of sugar practice after a 
year's study — during the process of bandaging a lying-in patient, 
asked with a King George wonderment if the stride which marked 
the abdomen from a former pregnancy were caused by a blister! 
The same sapient intuitive confidently pronounced dislocation of 
the wrist what the Reporter on being summoned ascertained to be 
fracture of the radius, about an inch from its distal extremity. On 
the real nature of the accident being pointed out, he persisted 
that there had been dislocation, which was reduced by the neces- 
sary manipulations. 

Lately a gentleman of the Essex Society was called to a case 
of labor, which, on arriving he ascertained was and had been for 
two days in the hands of a pair of these precious humbugs, Drs. 
A and L . 


The dystocia depended upon a simultaneous descent of the arm 
and head. The attendants stated that failing to return the arm, 
they had unsuccessfully attempted version. Our friend having 
easily accomplished the former manoeuvre, rose to go, but was re- 
tained by the urgent solicitations of the women, as well as the 
Doctors themselves. Accordingly he retired into an adjoining 
room with L , and A undertook to officiate at the bed- 
side. Soon being requested by A. to apply forceps, he examined 
to discover if it was necessary, and merely by a little manage- 
ment with the fingers, succeeded to the discomfiture of the quacks 
in finishing the labor speedily and happily. Unless bronzed by 
long residence in the clime of lies, they might well have blushed. 

One of them, Dr. A, can claim skill in diagnosis equal to that 
in practice, having named three plain cases of pneumonia, scrofu- 
la. The same astute Hahnemann redivivus saw merely trifling 
colic in a fearful attack of enteritis, which would have had a fatal 
issue if the patient's superior information had not fortunately in- 
duced his dismissal in favor of a more energetic practitioner. 

I have this day seen a family containing half a dozen cases of 
small pox, the first of which on the fifth day of the eruption, Dr. 
L called kine-pox!!! 

Now the question is, how shall we check the popular frenzy 
which bears these cheats on to fortune ? And primo, let us not 
be mealy-mouthed. Are we firm in the conviction that homoeo- 
pathy is an impudent imposition ? Then let us avow it boldly, 
unreservedly, in face of friend and foe. Let us refuse all courte- 
sy, personal and professional, towards its ministers; let us scent 
out and hunt as with a hound's keenness and zeal the foul mon- 
ster, till it slink from the vicinage of civilization, to the compa- 
nionship of the superstitions that flourish in murky heathendom. 

It is superfluous to add that we should not extend it a quasi- 
sanction, by yielding to practice it if preferred. What a lower- 
ing of dignity. What an admission of ignorance. What a libel 
on medicine does this time-serving submission to senseless whim 
involve. Are our patients their own physicians? Then let them 
without interference have fools for their patients. Having princi- 
ples that the waves of time beating for six thousand years have 
not been able to undermine, let us abide by them. Yes, rooted 


and grounded in the faith, let us hold fast our profession unto the 
end, and eventually the wandering world will wheel into its ac- 
customed path, around its old centre of light and attraction. 
Thus shall we draw a bright and eternal line between puerility 
and intellect, honor and impudence, conscience and rascality, 
mercenary meanness and noble devotion to truth. 

But the radical measure against homoeopathy is the elevation of 
the standard of medical education. The venders of sugar pills 
come mostly, to our shame and confusion, out of our own ranks — 
men half-taught, who, shouldered aside by their more accomplish- 
ed brethren, glide into this popular and comfortable bye-path, to 
enjoy the smiles and the confidence of aristocratic hypochondri- 
acs with more wealth than wit. Too many students pre-calcu- 
late the minimum of mental and pecuniary expenditure for a de- 
gree, and balance the profits of trade in life with those of trade in 
merchandize. Then if the ancient way of calomel, bleeding, and 
little thought, is worth to them $500 a year, and sugar pills with 
no thought would nett glOOO, can they be expected to hesitate 
which of the two to choose ? Now by increasing the labor and 
difficulties of the way, we shall diminish the influx of these dis- 
honorable traders into our inclosure. 

Farther, we are ready to grant that some homoeopathic physi- 
cians are sincere; and their sincerity is owing to debility of rea- 
son — to want of mental training. Let the curriculum be such as 
to shut out from the student the possibility of this gross deception. 

Before touching a bone, let him learn to think strongly, inde- 
pendently, let his mind, so to speak, develope its muscles ere it 
essay the rudimentary tasks of our arduous art. Shall we not 
give the thews of Hercules for the mighty work of Hercules ?— 
Then shall the profession, instead of being overstocked with 
drones who are not overstocked with wit, assume its proper place 
in the estimation of the world, and by force of evident superiority 
in classical, mathematical, and polite learning, as well as in its 
technicality, restrain the world's waywardness and tendency to 

Away then forever with a scheme which allows the rustic like 
Harlequin, through a barrel, to leap at once from Musa and the 
rule of three, into the recondite mysteries of the human median- 


ism, hard to be apprehended by the acutest intellect under the 
severest regimen, and utterly inaccessible to weak or misdirected 
effort. No more superficial scratching of the soil. A luxuriant 
crop will wave but over fields whose sub-soil has been ploughed 
up, and sown with the good seed in no stinted measure.. 

So shall we avoid the disgrace of continuing to furnish quacks 
to the world; and so in time will the laughter-moving dreams of 
Hahnemann sink into oblivion, or only be remembered as having 
formerly plagued the profession in just punishment for neglect- 
ing the education of its members. 

Newark, May 2, 1848. 


The Delegates of" the Medical Society of New Jersey," to " the 
American Medical Association ," respectfully report the following: 

The Annual Convention of the American Medical Association, 
for the year 1848, commenced its sessions in Baltimore on the 
2d of May inst, and closed them on the 5th. The number of ac- 
credited delegates was four hundred and seventy-seven, of whom, 
two hundred and seventy-seven were in actual attendance; em- 
bracing some of the most distinguished Medical Professors, Phy- 
sicians and Surgeons, from twenty-two States of the Union, and 
from the Medical Corps of the United States Army and Navy. 

From this State, in addition to your own Delegates, the follow- 
ing gentlemen were in attendance, as representatives of their re- 
spective District Societies, viz: Dr. Saunders, of Gloucester; Dr. 
Taylor, of Camden; Dr. Gibbon, of Salem; Dr. Hunt, of Hunter- 
don; Dr. Haines, of Burlington, and Dr. Magee, of Passaic; being 
in all, eight from the State of New Jersey. 

The Chair was taken by the venerable President of the Asso- 
ciation, Dr. Nathaniel Chapman, of Philadelphia, who briefly ad- 


dressed the Association on the auspicious circumstances under 
which it was convened, and the important reforms contemplated 
in its organization. 

A resolution, providing for the opening of the sittings of the 
Association with prayer, by Clergymen to be invited by the Com- 
mittee of Arrangements, after a somewhat exciting debate, was 
laid on the table; the Convention disclaiming any disrespect for 
such devotional exercises, and declaring its disposal of the resolu- 
tion, to be made in deference to the conscientious scruples of a 
respectable portion of its members, whose regard for the great 
principles of religious truth, was no less decided than that of the 
Convention at large. 

The following gentlemen, nominated by a Committee composed 
of one member, chosen by the delegates of each state represented 
in the Convention, were chosen officers of the Association for the 
ensuing year, viz: Dr. Alexander H. Stephens, of New York, 
President. Dr. Samuel Jackson, of Pennsylvania; Dr. J. C. 
Warren, of Massachusetts; Dr. Paul T. Eve, of Georgia, and 
Dr. William M. Awl, of Ohio, Vice Presidents. Dr. Alfred 
Stille, of Pennsylvania, and Dr. H. I. Bowditch, of Massachusetts, 
Secretaries; and Dr. Isaac Hays, of Pennsylvania, Treasurer. 

A communication from the New York College of Pharmacy, on 
the subject of the extensive importation of spurious and adulter- 
ated drugs and chemicals was presented, and after it had been 
read, the Association was addressed by Dr. Edwards, of Ohio, 
Chairman of the Special Committee, on that subject, of the House 
of Representatives of the United States. In the course of his re- 
marks, numerous facts were adduced to show that some of the 
most valuable medicinal articles used in daily practice, were im- 
ported in an adulterated state, greatly to the sacrifice of human 
life, and to the derogation of the skill of the Medical Profession. 
A resolution of thanks to Dr. Edwards was thereupon presented 
and passed, and a committee ordered to prepare a memorial to 
Congress on this subject. 

A report from the Standing Committee on Obstetrics was read 
by Dr. Harvey Lindsley, of Washington, D. C, its Chairman, 
characterized by great industry and patient investigation, and 
devoted chiefly to the availability of Ether and Chloroform, as 


means for the diminution of the pains of parturition. The re- 
port decidedly favoured the cautious use of these articles, and de- 
clared that the practice was sustained by the fact that, in over one 
thousand cases, wherein one or the other of these articles had been 
employed, very few were attended with untoward, and none by 
fatal results; while by far the greater number yielded testimony 
to the happiest anossthetic effect from their use. 

Dr. George W. Norris, of Philadelphia, Chairman of the Com- 
mittee on Surgery, read a well prepared and discriminating report 
on the subject of improvements in the treatment of surgical cases, 
which had been made during the past year; and was followed by 
Dr. Isaac Parrish, of Philadelphia, from the same Committee, 
with an interesting and elaborate paper on the use of Chloroform 
and Ether, as preventives and alleviators of pain, incident to sur- 
gical operations. This paper went largely into the history of the 
introduction of the practice, and of the facts, which, in his view, 
established the propriety of its general adoption. 

The subject of this report, as well as that on the use of anoes- 
thetic agents in Midwifery practice, was resumed in a subsequent 
stage of the proceedings of the Convention, and in the course of 
the debate, the Association was favored with the views of that 
veteran of the surgical profession, Dr. Warren, of Boston, who 
gave his decided testimony in favor of these agents, with enlight- 
ened caution, and expressing his preference of a preparation which 
he designated Chloric Ether, and which he described as a modifi- 
cation of Chloroform and Ether, possessing the valuable qualities 
of those articles, without their deleterious properties. 

A sufficient amount of information to establish on a reliable 
basis the indications for, and the contra-indications against the 
use of these articles, not having, in the opinion of the Association, 
been collected, the reports were directed to be published, but the 
Association declined to commit itself to their principles, and re- 
ferred the subject to the appropriate Standing Committees, with 
instructions to collect further information, and report at the next 
annual meeting. 

The report of the Standing Committee on Medical Literature 
was read by its Chairman, Dr. O. Wendall Holmes, of Boston. 
This interesting Report presented an exteuded history of Amen- 


can Medical Literature, entered largely into a review of the mer- 
its and demerits of the various Medical Journals contemporane- 
ous and retrospective, and gave a brief summary of the most 
important topics discussed in the more recent reviews. The 
production of a gentleman of great professional and literary ac- 
complishment, of discriminating taste, and classic humor, and, 
written with a quill though armed with caustic, not dipped in gall, 
this Report is fitted to make a durable impression on our profes- 
sional literature, the effect of which, it is hoped, may be seen in 
the substitution of candid and just criticism for partial laudation 
and ill-natured castigation, and of philosophical and original sug- 
gestion for indolent synopsis and impotent common-places. 

The Report of the Committee on Practical Medicine, prepared 
by Professor Joseph M. Smith, of New York, was unfortunately 
lost, with the trunk which contained it, on the way to the place 
of meeting. Dr. Smith, however, made an exceedingly instruc- 
tive statement of the subjects treated of in the Report, which, 
while it engrossed the interested attention of the Association en- 
hanced the regret universally felt, on account of the loss of the 
written document. There is good reason to hope that this report, 
if not recovered, will be re-written, so that its valuable contents 
may not be lost to the profession. The matters embraced in Dr. 
Smith's verbal statement, were a reference to some reported im- 
provements in the treatment of edematous laryngites by Dr. Gordon 
Buck, of New York; certain observed alternations of exanthema- 
tous diseases with yellow fever, — a review of the epidemics which 
have prevailed during the past year — remarks on the contempo- 
raneous prevalence of typhoid fevers, measles and scarlatina — 
the identity of typhus, typhoid and ship fever, and some philo- 
sophical observations on the nature of the miasmatic influences 
concerned in their production. 

The subject which awakened the most extended discussion in 
the Convention, was the Report of the Committee on Medical 
Education, which was read by Dr. B. R. Welford, of Virginia. 
Among other matters treated of in this valuable Report, were a 
statement of the requirements of American Medical Colleges, as 
contrasted with those of foreign countries — the comparative short- 
ness of the term of medical education — the insufficiency of clini- 


cal instruction — the injurious effects of competition among medi- 
cal institutions, which has tended to lower the standard of quali- 
fication, and to laxness in requiring candidates to come up to a 
more elevated standard, when such has been adopted — the infre- 
quency of the examinations of students, and the abuses growing 
out of the union of the business of teaching and licensing in the 
same body. The evils resulting from these causes were vividly por- 
trayed in the Report, as seen in the annual addition to the number 
of medical practitioners in a ratio far exceeding, and indeed, almost 
doubling that of France and other foreign countries; and in the 
inferior grade of attainment made by a large proportion of those 
who are thus liberally admitted to the honors of the profession. 
The Report concluded with a series of resolutions, which, after 
an extended and animated discussion in which some of the most 
experienced and sagacious minds of the American Medical Pro- 
fession participated, were, after amendment, adopted with great 
unanimity. These resolutions contemplated the recommendation 
to the governors of hospitals to open their doors for the admission 
of medical students — the more general introduction of clinical in- 
struction — the institution of daily or weekly examinations by the 
professors of medical schools — the adoption of efficient measures 
to secure the habitual attendance and attention of students, at the 
lectures, as well of the first as of the second course — the require- 
ment, in lieu of, or in addition to the customary thesis, of a de- 
scription, by the candidates for degrees, of at least four cases of 
disease, made from their own observation, with the pathology, 
diagnosis, treatment, &c, and the appointment of official persons 
qualified to judge of qualifications of the candidates, to be present 
at their final examination for degrees. 

It was a gratifying fact, elicited in the progress of the discus- 
sion, that the professors of the two oldest medical schools in the 
country, in compliance with the expressed desire of the last Con- 
vention of the Association, had already extended their terms of 
instruction; and that, in common with the teachers of the schools 
generally, they felt disposed cheerfully to accede to any practi- 
cable measures which should be recommended by the Association 
to elevate the standard of medical education. 

Dr. Gwynn, from the Medical Department of the National In- 


stitute, presented a communication from that body, desiring the 
Association to establish a committee on Public Hygeine, which de- 
sire was complied with, and a committee of twelve appointed ac- 
cordingly. The subject of premature interments was referred to 
the same committee; as was also the subject of the deleterious 
effects of the excessive use of coffee and tea by children and the 
laboring classes. 

A resolution recommending the establishment of medical socie- 
ties in the States where none now exist, was, on motion of Dr. 
Atlee, of Pennsylvania, adopted by the Association. 

Copies of the Charters and Constitutions of the Medical Socie- 
ties of New York and New Jersey, were presented by Dr. Ste- 
phens, the President of the Association, in behalf of New York, 
and by the delegates of this Society, in behalf of New Jersey. 

The delegates of this Society also presented a copy of the law 
for the registration of births, marriages and deaths, passed by the 
Legislature of this State, at the suggestion of this Society. 

The President and Vice Presidents were authorised to appoint 
twelve delegates to represent the Association in the Provincial 
and British Medical Associations of Great Britain. 

Standing Committees on various subjects of interest to the pro- 
fession were appointed, in accordance with the provisions of the 
Constitution, the Medical Society of this State being honored with 
a place on two of these Committees, in the persons of their dele- 

The city of Boston was selected as the place of meeting of the 
Association for the year 1849. 

The foregoing summary will serve to indicate the principal 
topics, which were the subjects of consideration and action by the 
Association. Your delegates regret that, on account of the short 
time that has elapsed since its adjournment, their description of 
this most interesting assemblage, so creditable, and promising 
such important benefits to our profession, must of necessity, be so 
meager and synoptical. They are gratified to be able to state 
that, in the ample report to be expected from the Committee 
of Publication, which will contain in full, the several valu- 
able papers read before the Association, the deficiencies of their 
brief summary will be more than supplied. This report will 


prove highly interesting and instructive to every member of the 
profession, and as it will be voluminous, and its publication be 
expensive, it is greatly to be desired that it will be generally 
sought by all who feel concerned for its elevation and improve- 
ment. To meet the expense of publication, an assessment of 
three dollars was laid on the members of the Association, and a 
resolution was passed, requesting an appropriation from the diffe- 
rent local societies. 

Your delegates in concluding their report, cannot withhold the 
expression of a grateful appreciation of the attentions paid to them, 
in common with the representatives of other societies and insti- 
tutions, as well by the faculties of the two Medical Colleges in 
Baltimore, as by individual members of the profession, resident in 
the city, and of the greatly exalted sense with which the discus- 
sions they have heard, have impressed them, of the practical good 
sense, wisdom, learning and professional worth of the honorable 
brotherhood to which we all belong. May its future meetings be 
characterized by like good feeling, and equally redound to its 
honor. Respectfully submitted, 



The first rise and progress of the Medical Society of New Jer- 
sey, from 1766 to 1848, read at the late Jlnnual Meeting, by 

J. B. Munn, M. D. 

" The low state of medicine in New Jersey, and the many diffi- 
culties and discouragements, alike injurious to the people and the 
physician, under which it has hitherto labored, and which still 
continues to oppose its improvement in utility to the public, and 
its advancement to its native dignity, having for many years past 
engrossed the attention of some gentlemen of the profession, and 
occasionally been the subject of their conversation, it was early 
last winter determined to attempt some measures of rescuing the 
art from that abject condition (not to say worse) into which it 


seemed too fast to decline. It was deeme^l also, that a Medical 
Society well conducted, would naturally derive credit on the pro- 
fession, and ever be of the highest advantage both to the public 
and to the several members." With these good views the annex- 
ed advertisement was inserted in the New York Mercury.* 

«« A considerable number of the practitioners of physic and sur- 
gery in East New Jersey, having agreed to form a society for their 
mutual improvement, the advancement of the profession, and the 
promotion of the public good; and desirous of extending as far as 
in their power, the usefulness of their scheme, and of cultivating 
the utmost harmony and friendship with their brethren, hereby re- 
quest and invite gentlemen of the profession in the Province, 
that may approve of their design, to attend their first meeting, 
which will be held at Mr. Duff's, in the city of New Brunswick, 
on Wednesday the 23d of July, at which time and place the Con- 
stitution and regulations of the Society will be settled and sub- 

Dated, East New Jersey, June 27, 1766. 

In consequence of this, a large body of the most respectable 
practitioners in the Eastern Division of the province, met on the 
day appointed at New Brunswick, where they formed themselves 
into a standing society and voluntary incorporation, according 
to the following plan, viz: 

"Instrument of Association and Constitution of the New Jersey 

Medical Society. 

Whereas medicine, comprehending properly physic and surge- 
ry, is one of the most useful sciences to mankind, and at the same 
time the most difficult to be fully attained, so much so, that in- 
deed perfection therein is perhaps never to be acquired, the 
longest life spent in its pursuit always finding something new to 
occur, and lamenting something still wanting to perfect the art. 
And as every means therefore, that will tend to enlarge the stock 
of knowledge and experience of the pursuer of this science, should 
be eagerly sought after and prosecuted; and whereas among those 
gentlemen of particular towns, neighborhoods, or districts, who 

* No newspaper printed in East New Jersey at this time it is presumed. 


have been already initiated in the healing arts, and engaged in 
the practice, nothing seems better adapted to such a desirable end 
than a friendly correspondence and communication of sentiment, 
especially if united in a well regulated society; the improvements 
of each, either from study or observation, being by this method 
diffused to many, and each member as well as the public being 
thereby essentially benefitted, exclusive of the pleasures of social 
intercourse, and the many useful refinements that might flow from 
thence: And whereas, further, considerable advantages from so- 
cieties of this kind properly instituted, might frequently arise, 
particularly where the laws or custom had not established neces- 
sary regulations respecting the admission of candidates— the main- 
tenance of the dignity of the profession, and the security of the 
public from impositions and the like, it being in such cases, 'till 
better remedies be provided in the power of a society including 
the reputable practitioners of a city, county, or large district, to 
do much for the advancement of their art, and the interests of the 
people among whom they reside. 

Moved by sentiments of this kind, and with the most upright 
and sincere intention of promoting the above mentioned and other 
good purposes, we the subscribers, practitioners of physic and 
surgery in New Jersey, now assembled, have agreed to form our- 
selves, and do hereby form and unite ourselves into an amicable 
and brotherly society, to be called and known by the name of the 
New Jersey Medical Society. And for the better carrying our 
good designs into execution, have voluntarily and unanimously 
consented to, ratified and confirmed the following articles or laws, 
as the fundamental constitution of our association : which consti- 
tution, we do hereby engage each for himself to the whole, and to 
one another as far as possible, inviolably to observe and fully to 
submit to, as obligatory on us." 

Passing by the rules for the organization of the society and 
auxiliary societies to be formed, as somewhat too lengthy in detail 
for this narrative, we extract some of the rules in the aforesaid 
constitution ; which is deemed most important to notice as emana- 
ting from the first founders of the society, viz : 

1. That we will never enter any house in quality of our pro- 
fession, nor undertake any case either in physic or surgery, but 


with the purest intention of giving the utmost relief and assistance 
that our art shall enable us, which we will diligently and faithful- 
ly exert for that purpose. 

2. That we will at all times when desired, be ready to consult 
or be consulted by any of our brethren, in any case submitted to 

3. That we will not pretend to, or keep secret any nostrum or 
specific medicine of any kind, as being inconsistent with the gen- 
erous spirit of the profession, but will at all times be ready to dis- 
close and communicate to any member of this society, any dis- 
covery or improvement we have made in any matter respecting 
the healing art. 

4. That we will on all occasions treat one another as becomes 
the medical character^ and that each of us will respectively do 
our utmost to maintain harmony and brotherly affection in this 
society, and to promote the usefulness of it, both to the profession 
and the public. 

5. That as we have separated ourselves to an office of benevo- 
lence and charity, we will always most readily and cheerfully 
(when applied to) assist gratis, by all the means in our power, the 
distressed poor and indigent in our respective neighborhoods, who 
may have no legal maintenance and support from their country. 

6. That this society will do all in their power to discourage 
and discountenance all quacks, mountebanks, impostors, or other 
ignorant pretenders to medicine, and will on no account support 
or patronize any but those who have been regularly initiated into 
medicine, either at some University, or under the direction of 
some able master or masters, or who by the study of the theory 
and practice of the art, have otherwise qualified themselves to the 
satisfaction of this society, for the exercise of their profession. 

Dated 23d July, A. D. 1766. 

Signed by Robert McKean, Chris. Manlove, John Cochran 
Moses Bloomfield, James Gilliland, William Burnet, Jona Day- 
ton, Thomas Wiggins, William Adams, Bern. Budd, Laurence V. 
Derveer, John Griffith, Isaac Harris, James Sacket, Jr. 

The Medical Society of New Jersey thus organized by its first 
founders, show by the subsequent record of their proceedings, 


that they progressed prosperously, and became a numerous and 
highly respectable society, by the accession of members from East 
and West New Jersey. It may be seen in all their doings at their 
annual and other meetings, that they employed their time zealous- 
ly, in efforts for mutual improvement in the science of medicine 
and surgery; that they had annual addresses from their Presi- 
dents—the statements of cases of disease— gave gratuitous advice 
and prescriptions, in all such important cases as were brought to 
their view at their meetings, and engaged in discussions upon 
medical topics occasionally, until the 4th of November 1775; af- 
ter which time their meetings were discontinued for some years, 
for reasons set forth by a committee appointed to report thereon, 
on the 6th of November 1781; who at the next meeting on the 7th 
of May 1782, reported as follows: l - That with regret we observe 
the vacation of six years in the Journals of this society; and to 
prevent any reflections that might arise, unfavorable to its reputa- 
tion in the minds of uninformed or disingenuous persons, it is 
thought necessary to assign here the cause and reason of this sus- 
pension in medical erudition. The war (which has been produc- 
tive of the happy revolution in America) having claimed the at- 
tention of all ranks of freemen; most of the members of this soci- 
ety took an early and decided part in the opposition to British 
tyranny and oppression, and were soon engaged, either in the 
civil or military duties of the State; added to this the local situa- 
tion of the war, (the scene of action being chiefly in this, and the 
adjoining states) rendered an attendance on the usual stated meet- 
ings, not only unsafe, but in a great measure impracticable, from 
the scattered and distant residence of the members. Sensible, 
however, that improvements which would do honor to the most 
elevated understandings, are oftentimes hit upon by men of more 
confined abilities; and that in medicine, as well as in every other 
circumstance of life, it is our duty to avail ourselves us much as 
possible of all discoveries tending to the common benefit. As 
soon as sufficient order and harmony was restored to civil govern- 
ment and society, a convening of the members was again deemed 
necessary and proper, as well to re-establish it upon its former 
liberal and reputable principles, as to place it under the patronage 
of the authority of the state." 


As this society, thus re-established, was destined soon to be 
connected with State Legislation by special statute in their favor, 
it may be interesting to trace its history in that channel. By re- 
ference to the ancient records of this society, it appears among 
other things, that at an early day after its first formation, the at- 
tention of its members was engaged in putting forth efforts to ob- 
tain an Act of the Provincial Legislature, to protect and encour- 
age them in their laudable endeavors to elevate the medical pro- 
fession to a higher standard in qualifications and usefulness. 

In the minutes of the society, dated 10th, November 1772, we 
find this record: " Resolved, that the thanks of this Board be given 
to Doctors Cochran and Bloomfield, for their attending the House 
of Assembly, and obtaining a law for the regulation of the prac- 
tice of physic and surgery in this province." 

The act is as follows: 

Jin Jlct to regulate the practice of Physic and Surgery within the 
Colony of Neio Jersey. Passed September 26, 1772. 

Whereas many ignorant and unskilful persons in physic and 
surgery, to gain a subsistence, do take upon themselves to admi- 
nister physic, and practice surgery, in the Colony of New Jersey, 
to the endangering of the lives and limbs of their patients; and 
many of his Majesty's subjects, who have been persuaded to be- 
come their patients, have been great sufferers thereby; for the pre- 
vention of such abuses for the future, 

Sec. 1 . Be it enacted by the Governor, Council, and General 
Assembly, and it is hereby enacted by the authority of the same, 
That, from and after the publication of this act, no person what- 
soever shall practice as a physician or surgeon, within this colony 
of New Jersey, before he shall first have been examined in physic 
or surgery, approved of and admitted by any two of the Judges of 
the Supreme Court for the time being, taking to their assistance 
for such examination such proper person or persons as they in 
their discretion shall think fit; for which service the said Judges 
of the Supreme Court as aforesaid, shall be entitled to a fee of 
twenty shillings f to be paid by the person so applying; and if any 
candidate, after due examination of his learning and skill in phy- 
sic and surgery as aforesaid, shall be approved and admitted to 
practice as a physician or surgeon, or both, the said examiners, or 
any two, or more, shall give under their hands and seals, to the 
person so admitted as aforesaid, a testimonial of his examination 
and admission in the form following, to wit: 


To all to whom these presents shall come, or may concern; 

Know ye, that we whose names are hereunto subscribed, in 
pursuance of an Act of the Governor, Council, and General As- 
sembly of the colony of New Jersey, made in the twelfth year ot 
the reign of our sovereign Lord King George the third, entitled An 
act to regulate the practice of physic and surgery within the colo- 
ny of Neiv Jersey, have duly examined of 
physician or surgeon, or physician and surgeon, as the case may 
be, and having approved of his skill, do admit him as a physician 
or surgeon, or physician and surgeon, to practise in the said faculty 
or faculties, throughout the colony of New Jersey. In testimony 
whereof we have hereunto subscribed our names, and affixed our 
seals, to this instrument, at this day of Annoque 
Domini 17 . 

Sec. 2. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, 
That if any person or persons shall practice as a physician or sur- 
geon, or both, within the colony of New Jersey, without such tes- 
timonial as aforesaid, he shall forfeit and pay for every such of- 
fence, the sum of five pounds; one half thereof to the use of any 
person or persons who shall sue for the same, and the other half 
to the use of the poor of any city or township where such person 
shall so practice contrary to the tenor of this act; to be recovered 
in any court where sums of this amount are cognizable, with costs 
of suit. 

Sec. 3. Provided always, That this act shall not be construed 
to extend to any person or persons administering physic, or prac- 
tising surgery, before the publication hereof, within this colony, 
or to any person bearing his Majesty's commission, and employed 
in his service as a physician or surgeon. And provided always, 
That nothing in this act shall be construed to extend to hinder 
any person or persons from bleeding, drawing teeth, or giving as- 
sistance to any person, for which services such persons shall not 
be entitled to make any charge, or recover any reward. Provid- 
ed also. That nothing herein contained shall be construed to ex- 
tend to hinder any skilful physician or surgeon from any of the 
neighboring colonies, being sent for upon any particular occasion, 
from practising on such occasion within this colony. 

Sec. 4. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, 
That every person now practising physic or surgery, or that shall 
hereafter be licensed as by this act is directed, shall deliver his 
account or bill of particulars to all and every patient, in plain En- 
glish words, or as nearly so as the articles will admit of; all and 
every of which accounts shall be liable whenever the patient, his 
executors or administrators shall require, to be taxed by any one 
or more Justices of the Supreme Court, or any one or more of the 
Judges of the Inferior Court of Common Pleas of the county, city, 
or borough wherein the party complaining resides, calling to their 


assistance such persons therein skilled as they may think proper. 

Sec. 5. Jind be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, 
That every physician, surgeon, or mountebank doctor, who shall 
come into or travel through this colony, and erect any stage or 
stages for the sale of drugs or medicines of any kind, shall, for 
every such offence, forfeit and pay the sum of twenty pounds, pro- 
clamation money; to be recovered in any court where the same 
may be cognizable, with costs of suit; one half to the person who 
will prosecute the same to effect, the other half to the use of the 
poor of any city, borough, township or precinct, where the same 
offence shall be committed. 

Sec. 6. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid. 
That this act, and every clause and article herein contained, shall 
continue and be in force for the space of five years, and from 
thence until the end of the next session of the General Assembly, 
and no longer. 

The next act of the kind is a public act, entitled " An act to 
regulate the practice of physic and surgery within the State of 
New Jersey," passed the 26th, of November 1783; and contains 
a legal provision for the mode of examination to obtain a license 
to practice physic and surgery, and a preamble and penal enact- 
ment similar in character to the act of 1772. 

The next, is an act incorporating the Medical Society of New 
Jersey, and was passed the 2d of June 1790, and is declared sub- 
stantially in the preamble to be for the better carrying into effect 
the literary and scientific objects of the society. The act among 
other things, provides a mode of organization — that fifteen mem- 
bers shall be the quorum, and its charter to expire in twenty-five 
years. The society under its act of incorporation, proceeded to 
hold their regular meetings from this period until November 3d, 
1795, when we have to record another discontinuance in its meet- 
ings until the 23d of June 1807; a period of nearly twelve years. 

The cause of this discontinuance in holding their meetings, is 
stated to have been, by reason of the small number of their at- 
tending members becoming at this period reduced by age, infirmi- 
ty, death, removal and otherwise, so that a quorum according 
to the terms of their charter, could not be obtained to meet 
and organize for business; therefore a circular invitation was 
given by some of the members, to all licensed practitioners in 
the state, to meet with them and become members of the Soci- 
ety on the 23d of June 1807, aforesaid. At this time and place 


nineteen individuals of the medical profession attended in conse- 
quence of the foregoing invitation, and became members, of which 
number the writer of this narrative was one. 

It seems proper to state in this place, that this accession of new 
members, without examination, only being received upon their de- 
claration that they were licentiates, and without a constitutional 
quorum to admit them, was done from the necessity of the case, 
to keep up the existence of the society under the act of incorpo- 
ration, at the same time, the whole proceeding was in open viola- 
tion of their charter, and one of their fundamental rules for the 
admission of members, which they suspended for the occasion. 
However, upon their representation of the whole proceedings 
frankly, to the state government the same year, an act of the le- 
gislature to legalize their proceedings was passed. 

The Medical Society of New Jersey thus revived by the addi- 
tion of new members and the yearly accession of others, continu- 
ed to progress favorably, and it is believed beneficially for them- 
selves and the public good, until the expiration of its charter in 
1816, when a new act of incorporation, under the name of the 
" Medical Society of the State oj New Jersey," was passed, to 
continue in force twenty-five years, unless sooner modified or re- 

This law contains a penal enactment against all persons who 
shall practice physic and surgery within the state thereafter, with- 
out a license, only so far, as to debar them from recovering their 
bills in courts of law, at the same time, it permits, or authorizes 
all unlicensed persons in the state who were in practice previous 
to the passage of this act, to doctor the community in their own 
way: or in other words, licenses all the quacks or impostors at 
that time in the state, to pursue their trade, on a par with the 
well educated and well qualified licentiates of our profession. 
Nevertheless, the society has uniformly prospered and continued 
in its labors of usefulness until the year 1830, when the present 
act under which we are organized, was passed. 

In this law, as is well known, there is a penal enactment 
against every person who shall practice physic and surgery with- 
in the state, without a diploma from the Medical Society of New 
Jersey, and a fine imposed of twenty-five dollars upon every one 


who violates the law. The present act states also, " that it shall 
be taken and considered as a public act? consequently subject to 
amendment or repeal, at the pleasure of the legislature. 
The following conclusions are now offered: 

1. That the Medical Society of New Jersey, dating its origin 
from the year 1766, was the first and most ancient society of the 
kind regularly formed and organized on this continent. 

2. That the colonial legislature of J 772, actually passed an act 
to regulate the practice of physic and surgery within the then 
province of New Jersey. 

S. That the legislative act to regulate the practice of physic 
and surgery, passed in the year 1772, from the best evidence we 
now have, was the first of the kind enacted by any state in the 

4. That as far as we can now ascertain the fact, New Jersey 
has not been behind any state in the confederacy, thus far, in le- 
gislating from time to time with a view to prevent quackery un- 
der any name or form, within its bounds. 

5. In our medical history, we have reason to exult in the facts, 
that we have had the aid, not only of state authority to patronize 
us from a remote period up to this day; added to which, we may 
with much satisfaction state, that, as a scientific profession we 
have uniformly been encouraged and sustained by the support of 
intelligent clergymen — the gentlemen of the bar — the scientific 
and literary classes in general, — with the aid also of the well edu- 
cated portion of the community, in all parts of the state. At the 
same time let us indulge the hope that a brighter day still is 
opening for us and posterity, when the increase and diffusion of 
knowledge shall dissipate the mists of ignorance and prejudice 
from our land, and education pouring its rays of light and truth 
upon all, shall form a perpetual bond of union with all, the better 
to secure and perpetuate the rights, interests, and happiness of 
the whole people. 



The eighty-second anniversary of the Medical Society of New 
Jersey was held at New Brunswick, May 9th, 1848. 

The President J. T. B. Skillman, in the chair. 

Forty-three members were present, including the officers, fel- 
lows, and delegates from twelve District Societies. 

The President addressed the society upon the subject of 
•< sympathetic disorder of the gastric and intestinal nerves." 

Interesting reports were received from the Standing Commit- 
tee by Dr. J. Lilly, chairman, and from the Delegates to the Na- 
tional Association, by Dr. S. H. Pennington; also, reports from 
several special committees, viz, one upon professional intercourse 
with persons not regularly licensed, which was re-committed to 
the same committee (of which Dr. Parrish is chairman) to report 
at the next meeting. A report upon the subject of licenses was 
accepted, and referred to the consideration of next meeting. 

The resolutions offered at a previous meeting by Dr. Forman, 
were finally disposed of by a motion to refer them to the dele- 
gates to the next National Association, to be submitted, if deem- 
ed advisable, to the action of said association. 

A request was read from the committee upon applications for 
the passage of a Registration law, and the following resolutions 
submitted by Dr. Marsh, were adopted: 

Resolved, That it be recommended to the members of the Medi- 
cal profession in the state, to furnish all the assistance in their 
power to the Town Clerks of their respective localities, to carry 
into effect the provisions of the law for the registration of mar- 
riages, births, and deaths. 

Resolved, That it be recommended to the District Societies to 
enforce the execution of the registration law, in all cases of wilful 
neglect or non-performance of duty on the part of the town clerks 
of their respective districts. 

A report from medical gentlemen of the county of Mercer, for 
a commission to institute a district society for that county was 


granted, and they were authorized to meet at the house of Samuel 
Kays, Trenton, on the 23d of May, for that purpose. 

The Standing Committee were requested to prepare some suita- 
ble obituary notices of Drs. W. Forman, John S. Condit, and 
Charles Smith, whose deaths were noticed in the annual report of 
the committee; and to publish the same in the New Jersey Medi- 
cal Reporter. 

A communication was received from a committee of the Col- 
lege of Pharmacy, of Philadelphia, relative to the adulteration of 
drugs and medicines, asking the co-operation of this society in 
memorializing Congress. Whereupon the following resolution 
was adopted, viz: "That a memorial be prepared upon the basis 
of said memorial and circular, and be signed by the officers of 
this society and transmitted to Congress." 

The following gentlemen upon nomination of the fellows pre- 
sent, were elected honorary members of this society — 

Jonathan Knight, M. D., of New Haven. 

Nathaniel Chapman, M. D., of Philadelphia. 

Alexander H. Stevens, M. D., of New York. 

The Corresponding Secretary reported that there were 
in the Eastern District 8 applications and 8 certificates granted 

do. Middle do. 9 do. 6 do. do. 

do. Western do. 6 do. 6 do. do. 

The following resolution was adopted, viz — 

That the Treasurer be authorized to transmit to the Treasurer 
of the National Association the sum of thirty-six dollars, with a 
request to be furnished with twelve or more copies of the publi- 
cation to be issued by said association, for the purpose of distri- 
bution among the District Societies. 

The committee on the Treasurer's account reported a balance 
in his hands of $262.98. 

The sum of ten dollars was ordered to be distributed to each 
District society the ensuing year. 

The following were elected officers — 

President, S. H. Pennington, of Newark. 

First Vice-President, A. F. Taylor. 

Second do. Joseph Fithian. 

Third do. E.J. Marsh. 


Corresponding Secretary, A. B. Dayton, of Middletown Point. 

Recording Secretary, William Pierson, of Orange. 

Treasurer, J. S. English, of Manalapan. 

Standing Committee, Joseph Parrish, Chairman, of Burlington, 
Z. Read, and B. Stratton. 

Reporter for Eastern District — Wm. M. Brown. 
Middle do. John H. Phillips. 
Western do. Franklin Gauntt. 

They were instructed to report to the chairman of the Standing 
Committee one month prior to the Annual meeting. 

Delegates to the National Association — Drs. J. B. Munn, and 
Richard M.Cooper. 

Censors for the Eastern District. 

Passaic District — Jetur R. Riggs, G. M. Terhune, A. W. Ro- 
gers, and E. J. Marsh. 

Essex District — W. Pierson, G. R. Chetwood, S. H. Penning- 
ton, and W. Whitehead. 

Morris District— J. B. Munn, N. W. Condict, T. Kitchell, 
and Elmer. 

Sussex District — John R. Stewart, A. Linn, F. Moran, and 
J. Titsworth. 

Warren District — W. P. Clarke, R. Byington, A. S. Clark, 
and P. F. Brakely. 

Censors for the Middle District. 

Somerset District — James S.Craig, H. Southard, A. Skillman, 
and R. S. Smith. 

Monmouth District — R. W. Cooke, W. L. DeBow, G. Lloyd, 
and J. S. English. 

Hunterdon District — John Lilly, Wm. Johnson, John F. 
Schenck, and George P. Rex. 

Censors for the Western District. 

Burlington District — Zach. Read, B. Stratton, Joseph Parrish, 
and F. Gauntt. 

Camden District — James Risiey, Isaac S. Mulford, Othniel H. 
Taylor, and Charles D. Hendry. 

Gloucester District — Charles F. Clark, Charles Garrison, John 
R. Sickler, and Thomas J. Saunders. 


Salem District — Charles Hannah, Thomas Reeves, J. B. Tuft, 
and Q. Gibbon. 

An interesting communication was presented by Dr. Munn, re- 
lative to the organization in 1766, and the early history of the 

Diplomas were granted by the President to the following licen- 
tiates, viz. — A. Dickenson Woodruff, Daniel M. Stout, Bowman 
Hendry, George Haines, Alexander Elwell, Edward Perry, Alfred 
A. Lutkins, Clifford Morrogh, Thomas S. King, Thomas R. Crit- 
tenden, Edward A. Osborn, Samuel S. Warren, Arthur Ward, 
John B. Petherbridge, John Vought, Henry P. Willing, Wm. B. 
Crittenden, Charles Allen, Azariah P. Hunt, Henry Race. 

Semi-annual meeting to be held at Trenton. 

W. PIERSON, Rec. Sec'y 

The following resolution submitted by the Salem delegation, was 
referred to the Standing Committee, and it is inserted here, apart 
from the official proceedings, that we may call the special atten- 
tion of the profession to the proposition which it contains, with a 
request that the Chairman of the Standing Committee may be put 
in possession of the arguments, which the friends of the proposed 
change may have to offer in its favor, as well as to request our 
friends in such parts of the state where the present system is 
satisfactory to give us their views in favor of continuing it. — Ed. 

«« Resolved, that the delegates from this (Salem) District to the 
Annual Meeting of the State Medical Society, be instructed to 
solicit an action by the latter, in regard to repealing the present 
law of examining candidates in each county society, and adopting 
the former law of dividing the State into three boards of Censors 
or Examiners, as being the most expedient and proper." 





By David B. Trimble, M. D. 
About the middle of last August I was requested to see 

, a gentleman of sixty-three years of age, of active and tem- 
perate habits, and strong constitution, but who had been laboring 
under gastric derangement for about two years. He had fre- 
quently pain after eating: flatulent eructations, pyrosis, and con- 
stipation. During this period he would occasionally take a ca- 
thartic, and sometimes restrict his diet; but as a general rule, he 
paid little attention to either. When I first saw him, I found he 
had been taken very suddenly about two hours previously, with 
acute and violent pain in the stomach, near the cardia, but which 
had been in a great degree relieved by taking a large dose of 
laudanum. There was tenderness of the epigastrium, and con- 
stipation. I prescribed ol: ricini; a sinapism over the region of 
the stomach, rest, and a mild liquid diet. Called next morning 
to see him; found him much relieved and able to walk about his 
grounds, though there was considerable debility. Recommended 
him to remain in his chamber, pursue the same dietetic course, and 
as there was a good deal of tenderness remaining, to take moderate 
portions of pill: hydrargyri. The following day called again; 
found that he had become impatient of all restraint, returned to 
his usual mode of living, and disobeyed my instructions in every 

I declined further attention to the case, but he became worse, 
and in ten days sent for me again. I found him considerably 
emaciated, spirits depressed, pulse frequent, contracted, though 
not tense; tongue red, smooth, and broader than natural; and he 
had frequent attacks of pyrosis, ejecting large quantities of a 


glairy fluid from the stomach. There was tenderness of the epi- 
gastrium on pressure; and a circumscribed swelling, about an inch 
in diameter, situated over the cardiac orifice. He was now will- 
ing to submit implicitly to my directions, and his debility being 
considerable, I at once confined him to his bed. He was restrict- 
ed to a liquid farinaceous diet; and constipation continuing, I 
administered x grs. of calomel, followed in six hours by 1 oz. ol: 
ricini. This produced two or three moderate stools, and I then 
prescribed mass, hydrar. 2 grs. to be taken twice daily, and at 
night, to allay the pain, and general irritability, six grains of Do- 
ver's powders. Applied an epispastic to the epigastrium, and 
kept it discharging several days. Four days after the administra- 
tion of the first dose of the blue pill, copious alvine evacuations of 
dark bilious fceces came on, which afforded considerable relief to 
the gastric oppression. The same night the anodyne produced 
free diaphoresis, followed by great amelioration of the painful 
symptoms. The pills were omitted from this time, and occasional 
gentle saline aperients, or purgative enemata were resorted to 
when indicated by the state of the bowels. When the blistered 
surface had nearly healed, an ointment of tart, antim. was applied, 
which produced a fine crop of pustules. The Dover's Powder 
was continued for two weeks, with occasional intermissions, and 
then omitted. After pursuing this course for about three weeks, 
he was permitted to use a more generous diet, consisting of animal 
jellies, &c. In five weeks from the time he first entered his cham- 
ber, he again left it, with all the unfavorable symptoms relieved, 
except slight tenderness on pressure of the epigastrium. His 
mind was cheerful, digestion natural, sleep undisturbed, skin 
clear and soft, and pulse regular, though weak from his emacia- 
ted condition. 

During the ensuing fifteen days I saw him several times, but he 
became impatient of the dietetic regulations, and the same symp- 
toms gradually returned. About this time he went to Wilming- 
ton, and was induced to try the Homospathic mode of treatment, 
which he continued about two weeks. Hope, and a change of 
treatment cheered him for a while, but he soon found that the 
infinitesimal doses of medicine (unfortunately not extended to his 
diet,) would not avail. He abandoned this treatment and went to 


a medical gentleman some miles distant; who gave him, to relieve 
the debility caused by his ride, brandy; which afforded liim tem- 
porary relief. This effect, I suppose was what induced the phy- 
sician to pronounce his disease gastralgia, and to continue the 
stimulating plan. This continued to afford temporary relief to 
the pain, but the tumefaction and debility rapidly increased. 

Towards the latter part of November he sent me an urgent re- 
quest to attend him again, and with reluctance I consented. 
He was greatly emaciated; two tumours in the epigastrium, the 
larger in the pyloric portion of the stomach, acute pain in the 
same region, pulse frequent, soft and contracted; a sense of con- 
striction, " as if a band was drawn tightly around the waist;" and 
all his former unfavorable symptoms returned in an increased de- 
gree. A similar method to the one at first resorted to was adopt- 
ed, he was cupped, and afterwards blistered over the epigastric 
region; purgative enemata were administered; and pills compos- 
ed of nit. argent. \ gr, acet morph. § gr. were given every four 
hours through the day; the quantity of morphia being doubled at 
night. The nit. silver was afterwards increased to £ gr. and was 
prescribed on account of the supposed ulceration of the coats of 
the stomach. This was continued until two weeks previous to 
his death, when the morphia alone was given. Under this course 
his sufferings were greatly mitigated, and he was rendered com- 
paratively comfortable. His appetite now failed, emaciation pro- 
ceeded more rapidly, hectic symptoms appeared, and two weeks 
before the fatal termination severe emesis occurred, an ichorous 
pus of a brownish color being ejected, and also passing freely 
from the bowels, the foetor of which was intense. The pyloric 
tumour became smaller; he was greatly prostrated, and a speedy 
termination of his sufferings was expected. He again rallied, and 
had a copious discharge of bile, which continued at intervals for 
forty-eight hours. Once or twice towards the termination of his 
disease, he complained of obtuse pain in the right hypochondrium. 
The tumour again rapidly increased, being three or four inches in 
diameter, and very prominent. On the 23d of December he was 
restless and feverish through the night; about day-light observed 
" it has broken," and made efforts to vomit, but was unable to do 
so. In a few hours he expired, and shortly after, I examined the 


tumour, when there was scarcely a trace of it remaining. The 
post mortem examination exhibited the following appearances; 
There were very extensive adhesions between the liver and 
stomach; and between the liver and diaphragm. The greater ex- 
tremity of the stomach presented but slight evidences of inflam- 
mation, but situated on the lower side of the pyloric portion, im- 
mediately before its junction with the duodenum, was an oblong 
tumour about four inches in length, and two in breadth; its edges 
thickened, indurated, and deeply serrated, and of a deep red, or 
purple hue. In the tumour, which was of a cupped form, there 
was about a table-spoonful of pus, of the same appearance as that 
ejected two weeks previously; and in its lower part an ulcer 
about the size of a dime. The tumour was so situated that the 
contents of the stomach could easily pass into the duodenum. 
Near the extremity of the left lobe of the liver, immediately over 
the cardia, was a tumour about as large as a walnut, which pro- 
duced the swelling first noticed. On the convex surface were two 
more, (one on the superior, the other on the lower portion of the 
right lobe,) about four inches in diameter, and in other portions of 
the liver were five smaller ones. These tumours had a medullary 
appearance, and were of a firm, smooth consistence. I considered 
them medullary carcinoma. The mesenteric glands were greatly 
enlarged, and presented the same appearance as the hepatic tu- 
mours. The substance of the liver not occupied by the tumours; 
the gall bladder and duct, and the duodenum, presented no mor- 
bid appearances. 

That the tumour in the stomach was a scirrhous formation, I 
think the appearances leave no doubt; and that it was equally 
certain that an abscess formed in it, and suppurated two weeks 
previous to, and again at the time of his death. The rigors, accele- 
rated pulse, flushed cheek, succeeded by vomiting, the ejection of 
pus, great prostration, and subsidence of the tumefaction, were 
all sufficient indications of this; or if any doubts could be enter- 
tained, the post mortem appearances would banish them. That the 
tumour was the effect, and not the cause of the disease, I think 
probable, from the symptoms of the case; and that the patient's 
sufferings might have been ameliorated, and his life considerably 
prolonged, had he persevered in the course originally prescribed; 
the relief experienced will, I think, leave no doubt. 


The inordinate and continued appetite; the relief given to the 
gastric distress for a time, by stimulants, and the absence of mor- 
bid hepatic symptoms, were the most striking anomalies of the 
case. There are few cases of chronic inflammation of the 
stomach, terminating in such extensive organic destruction, where 
the appetite remains so long unimpaired; and less frequently do 
stimulants afford relief to the sufferings caused by this disease. 
Authors state that the appetite is always depressed; and that the 
effect produced by a stimulus is the most determinate diagnostic 
between gastralgia and gastritis. Here two of the most prominent 
symptoms were reversed, and if the tumefaction had been absent, 
the diagnosis would have presented great difficulty. 

Burlington, June 1848. 



By William K. Mason, M. D. 

In April 1841, 1 was called to A. P., who had borne several 
children, and was then as she believed in the fifth month of preg- 
nancy; she had already felt the child sensibly, and expected to be 
confined in August following. I visited her frequently from the 
time I was first called, until the last of the following September; 
the latter part of August she was seized with frequent but irregu- 
lar pains in the abdomen, which was now much enlarged, and the 
motions of the fcetus so strong as to cause her sometimes to scream 
out. In a few days the pains subsided, and the motions of the 
fcetus ceased, it was therefore concluded the child was dead: she 
now complained of great pain in the left hypochondric region, and 
on making examination per vaginum, I found the os-uteri but 
slightly dilated, the fcetal head high up, with a soft and heavy 
mass intervening, but could discover no motion of the fcetus. 

December 3d, I was again called, and found her much emacia- 
ted with an abscess in the part where she had complained of so 
much pain; (left hypochondric region) the size of the abdomen 

mason's case of abscess. 295 

had been greatly reduced about four weeks previous, by an abun- 
dant discharge of foetid water from the intestines: on passing a 
probe into the abscess, it came in contact with bone: the abscess 
had been discharging externally for two weeks, and the lower ex- 
tremities had become anasarcous. I visited her frequently from 
this date until her death, and at sundry times extracted portions 
of the dead foetus, through the opening in the abscess, in a highly 
putrid state, until I had extracted all the bones except those of 
the head, part of the arms and a few smaller bones. About two 
weeks previous to death she had a hectic cough, and a copious 
expectoration of yellow pus, but without much excitement of pulse 
or general tebrile action. Her appetite was generally good until 
within two weeks of her death, when it failed and she sank rapid- 
ly, and expired on the 25th of December. 

Autopsy. In opening the abdomen, immediately under the 
umbilicus, came in contact with the parietal bones contained in a 
thin membranous sac about the thickness of brown paper, the in- 
side of which had a dark velous appearance: the sac was firmly 
attached anteriorly to the peritoneum, and posteriorly to the 
omentum under the umbilicus; in the portion of the sac adherent 
to the omentum there had been an opening the size of a twenty- 
five cent piece, which was at this time closed and completely 
healed. I suppose the watery discharge took place through this 
into the intestines; hence the foetid discharge some time before, 
and the abatement of the abdominal swelling; there was a com- 
munication between the sac and the opening in the hypochondric 
region, but none with the vagina or uterus; the latter organ looked 
healthy, without any sign of being ruptured, and was the usual 
size of the unimpregnated uterus, the os-uteri being normally 
closed. About a pint of very offensive matter remained in the 
sac. It is my firm belief, if the lady had had the comforts and 
attendance that some have who are in better circumstances, she 
would have recovered; she was situated where she could not have 
that attention her case required, for her constitution was good, 
and I believe it would have gained the victory over that formida- 
ble disease if she had been more favorably situated. 

Tuckerton, Mav, 1848. 



Tubercular consumption has always claimed and received a large 
share of the time and attention of the profession; the wide extent 
of its ravages, the insidious nature of its approach, the character 
of its victims, the usual fatality of its attack, and the confessed 
inability of medicinal agents even to stay its progress, have all 
contributed to invest this malady with a high degree of interest 
both for the profession and lay-public; and every attempt to throw 
light upon its nature and treatment, has been received with kind- 
ness and attention. 

Some recent investigations and discoveries of European patholo- 
gists and chemists appear to me to have a bearing upon this sub- 
ject, and I have thought that a brief statement of these doctrines 
and facts with inferences drawn from them, may not be without 
interest and profit. 

Bennet, and other morbid anatomists have stated as the result 
of numerous dissections, that cicatrices of ulcers of the lungs were 
found more frequently in the bodies of spirit-drinkers dying of 
other diseases than phthisis, than in persons of different habits. 
These cicatrices were proofs of the existence of former cavities 
which had become healed up; and they were met with, and that 
not rarely, for the most part in persons who had been spirit-drink- 
ers, proving conclusively that ulcers of the lungs may become 

It is well known that the blood is more highly arterialized and 
abounds more in fibrine in phthisis pulmonalis than in most other 
disorders of the economy; and this condition of the blood conti- 
nues through the whole course of the disease, when it proceeds to 
a fatal termination. Rokinstansky, one of the most profound and 
distinguished of the German pathologists, states that tuberculosis 
depends upon a fibrinous crasis of the blood, and that all attempts 
at staying the progress of the disease will be vain and futile, un- 
less this condition of the blood be changed: and that if this crasis 


of the blood be changed the disease will be checked, and in many 
cases the ulcers will heal. It has long been known to practical 
physicians, that certain conditions of the system suspended the 
progress of consumption, as pregnancy; and that certain diseases 
such as chronic bronchial affections, and some diseases of the 
heart prevented or stayed the pulmonary affection. The cause of 
this has not been well understood, and has received different ex- 
planations. Rokinstansky states that these conditions and dis- 
eases present mechanical obstacles to the transmission of the 
blood through the lungs, and prevent its arterialization, keeping 
it in a venous condition. This venosity of the blood prevents the 
formation of that fibrinous crasis, on which the development and 
deposit of tuberculous matter depends. 

Intermittent fever also prevents the development of tuberculo- 
sis, probably by some action on the blood, as this poison appears 
to exert a specific effect on the liver and spleen, organs particu- 
larly connected with the venous circulation. 

To prevent or cure tuberculosis, it should be our endeavor to 
change the fibrinous condition of the vital fluid; and causes which 
produce and maintain a venosity of the blood, will effect this. 

It has been proved by the experiments and facts of Brodie, 
Paris, and others, that alcoholic drinks taken into the stomach, 
pass undecomposed by absorption, or endosmose, into the blood 
vessels, and circulates in a free state with the blood. 

Liebig, our highest authority in animal chemistry, states that 
alcohol circulating in the blood unites with the oxygen in that 
fluid, and forms with it carbonic acid, keeping it in a venous 
state, and preventing that fibrinous crasis which is the origin of 
tuberculosis; carbonic acid, it is well known, is the element which 
causes the veniosity of the blood. Such are the results of the in- 
vestigations of different and independent laborers in the vineyard 
of truth. Bennet finds that tuberculous cavities are found more 
frequently healed in the lungs of spirit-drinkers than of any other 
class; Rokinstansky shows that an altered condition of the blood 
is necessary for the cure of tuberculosis, and that this altered con- 
dition is a state of venosity; and Liebig teaches that the alcohol 
which spirit-drinkers take into the stomach passes into the blood 


vessels, and there uniting with oxygen forms carbonic acid, and 
produces a venous condition of that fluid. 

Without wishing to give any countenance to intemperance, may 
I not ask the profession, whether in view of these statements, the 
total prohibition of spirituous drinks to all persons, especially to 
those pre-disposed to tubercles, is not likely to be attended with 
ill effects ? 

Whether the moderate use of alcoholic drinks ought not to be 
recommended to persons disposed to consumption, and the more 
free use of them be recommended to persons laboring under the 
disease ? 

Whether consumption of the lungs be not more prevalent than 
formerly, and whether the disease be not increasing in those com- 
munities, and among those persons who most strictly abstain from 
all spirituous beverages ? 

Whether the fibrinous condition of the blood can be altered by 
any system of diet ? 

Paterson, June, 1848. 


By the Editor. 

As the anesthetic properties of chloroform and sulphuric ether, 
or a combination of the two, have been extensively tested in 
surgical and obstetrical practice, it is a matter of some interest 
and importance to know whether these articles may not be 
advantageously employed as therapeutic agents in the cure of 
certain diseases of the nervous system, which have hitherto baffled 
the skill of the physician, or at least have caused him a great 
amount of care and solicitude. Delirium tremens may be ranked 
among the neuroses, the symptoms of the disease indicating dis- 
turbance of the nervous system merely: hence the trembling, 
watchfulness, terror, and general nervous excitement which form 
the peculiar characteristics of the malady. To relieve these 
symptoms by inducing sleep, is always the first and prominent 
care of the physician. No matter what remedies may be era- 


ployed, whether alcoholic stimulants, narcotics, or revulsives, 
to induce sleep is the chief end in the use of them all* And 
why? A depression of the nervous forces consequent upon 
the reaction following excessive stimulation, being the cause of 
the distressing symptoms, it is evident that a restoration of the 
suspended nervous energy will palliate them, and cure the evil; 
and when sleep is induced, and not till then, is there a hope of 

As it is not necessary that the sleep should be of that artificial 
character produced by opiates, the physician should be careful 
not to push the remedy so far as to induce narcotism; for here he 
may have a second disease, from which it may be impossible for 
the system to react. Sleep, as nearly allied to the natural condi- 
tion as possible, is the most desirable. If this may be induced by 
merely checking the insomnia for a time, by a nervous stimu- 
lant, and allowing the system to steady itself long enough to fall 
into a natural slumber, we have certainly gained a great point in 
the treatment of a troublesome disease; and we may on the other 
hand by avoiding the use of brandy, or other alcoholic drinks 
in the treatment, avoid exciting the patient's fondness for sti- 
mulants, and allow him to recover with a loathing of spiritu- 
ous liquors, and with a hope of permanent restoration. Again, it 
is a point of some moment to avoid any medicine, the free use of 
which (as opium) will be followed by a re-action that may require 
remedies for its relief. Whether etherization will do all for the 
patient that is desirable, is yet to be ascertained. A brief history 
of a case in which a mixture of chloroform and sulphuric ether 
was successfully employed, after the very free use of narcotics, and 
stimulants, may prove interesting. J. C. aged thirty-five, recent- 
ly had an attack of delirium tremens; he is of sanguine nervous 
temperament, and very easily influenced by alcoholic stimulants, 
he had abstained from their use for a year, but being absent from 
home, and meeting with an old friend, was induced to drink a 
glass of ale; he felt headache soon after, and " drank more to re- 
lieve it." He then took brandy, and soon became intoxicated, he 
remained in this state several days, was brought home much dis- 
turbed in mind, and shut himself in his room, hoping to sleep and 
be better. His wife gave him freely of laudanum, but he could 


not rest, the wakefulness continued, and with it came the harrass,- 
ing fears, and illusions so pathognomic of the disease. On the 
second day of the attack I was called to see him, and was inform- 
ed by his wife that he was a " hard patient to manage," that his 
former physician had often said that he found it more difficult to 
put him to sleep than any patient he had ever seen. Opium was 
the remedy uniformly employed, and he had been accustomed to 
very large quantities. After evacuating the bowels thoroughly, I 
gave it to him freely in the form of laudanum, black drop, and 
sulphate of morphia, at different times, but without effect. For 
forty-eight hours he took largely of some preparation of the drug, 
at intervals of an hour or an hour and a half, and drank freely of 
camphor water, and aromatic spirits of ammonia. He positively 
refused taking brandy or any of the ordinary alcoholic beverages, 
and his family strongly objected, hence the resort to the nervous 
stimulants before named, as substitutes. Finding the remedies 
which were employed altogether inefficient, being afraid to urge 
the opiates any farther, and the patient and his friends being un- 
willing to use any of the alcoholic preparations, on account of the 
fear of reviving the appetite for them, I felt myself warranted in 
trying the effect of sulphuric ether, and sought the advice of my 
friend, Dr. Trimble, upon the subject. He was unprepared to 
recommend its employment, having had no experience in its use. 
I however, determined to give it a trial, and invited the Dr. to 
witness its effect upon the patient. We visited him together, and 
applied a sponge wet with the sulphuric ether to his nostrils; at 
first he resisted it with some violence, saying that it was an in- 
vention to kill him; by the exercise of perseverance and firmness 
however, he soon yielded, and became fond of it, grasping the 
sponge convulsively, so that it required considerable effort to re- 
move it from his hand. He became somewhat calmed, but did 
not sleep; his eyes were kept open and presented an unnatural 
appearance; he would occasionally start upon his feet, and strug- 
gle with some imagined foe. At times he would cry out, and beg 
us not to kill him; it was this fear of being killed that haunted 
him continually through his sickness, so that he would rush from 
his room, and hide himself in other parts of the house, and among 
his neighbors. No restraint was imposed upon him, it being 


deemed sufficient to have him constantly in the presence of an 
attendant, who guarded him from harming himself or others. 

The ether did not put him to sleep, though it was continued for 
four hours at short intervals, during which time about two ounces 
were consumed. Failing to produce the desired effect, a glass 
inhaler containing a sponge saturated with ether and chloroform* 
in combination was applied to the mouth, and in less than fifteen 
minutes the patient fell back upon his pillow, in a sound slumber 
which continued without interruption for six hours, when he 
awoke and expressed himself quite well. He had not the slightest 
return of delirium afterwards, and convalesced rapidly; while 
under the etherial influence his pulse varied considerably; during 
the first hour or two, while inhaling the ether, it became some- 
what accelerated and smaller, but when brought completely un- 
der the effect of the remedy, it moderated, and was nearly natu- 
ral as to frequency after waking, though quite feeble from long 
watchfulness and excitement. 

The writer is aware that it is unsafe to conclude from the 
history of one case alone, that the same course of treatment may 
be safely pursued in every case of delirium tremens, but the 
character of the disease, and its obstinate persistence, in many 
cases notwithstanding the free use of opium and stimulants, may 
afford good reason for adopting the plan which proved so success- 
ful in the instance just cited. 

Half an ounce of ether, and forty drops of chloroform. 



Constitution and By-Laws of the New York Academy of Medi- 
cine, with a list of Officers and Fellows, New York, 1848. 

We have received a copy of a pamphlet with the above title, 
and it is gratifying to find that new medical organizations are 
springing up even in large cities where kindred associations 
already exist. It is an evidence of the increase of a fraternal 
feeling in the profession, that cannot do other than produce good 

The following is a list of its officers: 

Officers for the year 1848. 

President, John W. Francis, M. D.; Vice-Presidents , Thomas 
Cock, M. D.; John B. Beck, M. D.; J. K, Rodgers, M. D.; Wm. 
W. Miner, M.D.; Recording Secretary, F. Campbell Stewart, 
M. D.; Assistant Secretary , Marcus L. Taft, M. D. ; Domestic 
Corresponding Secretary, Wm. C. Roberts, M. D.$ Foreign 
Corresponding Secretary, Gurdon Buck, Jr. M. D.; Treasurer, 
James 0. Pond, M. D.; Librarian, Thomas F. Cock, M. D. 

Art. 2d of the Constitution declares the object of the Academy 

to be, 

First. The cultivation and advancement of the Science, by 
united exertions for mutual improvement, and contributions to 
Medical Literature. 

Second. The promotion of the character, interests, and honor of 
the fraternity, by maintaining the union and harmony of the regu- 
lar profession of the city and its vicinity, and aiming to elevate 
the standard of Medical Education. 

Third. The separation of regular from irregular Practitioners. 

Fourth. The association of the Profession proper for purposes 
of mutual recognition and fellowship. 

If the same spirit were to spread itself into the country, par- 
ticularly in towns and villages, how much more would the mem- 
bers of our profession be knit together in the bonds of harmony. 
It is a fact worthy of notice, that in large cities, where physicians 
are the most numerous, and where competition is most active, 
that there is more good feeling, and more of a common interest 


manifested, than is usually found where no medical organization 
exists. In neighborhoods where there may not be more than two 
or three physicians, good would result to them individually, and 
professionally, by suitable union with each other on the common 
ground of equal brotherhood. These are some of the good fruits 
of the National Medical Association. 

Proceedings of the State Medical Convention, held in Lancas- 
ter, April, 1848; and Constitution of the Medical Society of 
the State of Pennsylvania; then adopted. Lancaster, Penn. 
Published by order of the Convention, 1848. 

In our last number we called attention to the fact, that the 
Medical profession of Pennsylvania had met in Convention for 
the purpose of organizing a State Medical Society, and since that 
time we have received a copy of their proceedings, by which we 
learn that the object contemplated by the friends of the measure 
was harmoniously accomplished, and that the Convention proceed- 
ed to organize a Society, to be called " the Medical Society for 
the State of Pennsylvania;" the object of which is specified in 
the second article of the Constitution to be " the advancement of 
medical knowledge; the elevation of professional character; the 
protection of the interests of its members; the extension of the 
bounds of medical science, and the promotion of all measures 
adapted to the relief of suffering, and to improve the health and 
protect the lives of the community." 

The physicians in the different counties were recommended to 
organize county societies to aid in promoting the objects aforesaid. 
The Medical Associations and Colleges of Philadelphia were re- 
presented in the Convention, and there was a goodly attendance 
from several counties of the State. This movement is another 
cheering evidence of the onward march of the spirit of improve- 
ment, that cannot fail to meet with a reward to the profession and 
the people. 


By-Laws, adopted by the Managers of the New Jersey State 
Lunatic Asylum, at Trenton: also, the Act to provide for the 
organization of said Asylum, and for the care and mainte- 
nance of the insane: passed March 23, 1847; and the supple- 
ment to said Met, passed March 9, 1848. 

The by-laws designate the number and duties of the officers, 
and establish a wholesome order for the regulation of the Institu- 
tion. We see nothing in the laws or in the Act of organization, 
materially different from what generally obtains in similar insti- 
tutions: and in acknowledging the receipt of the pamphlet will 
express our hope that a copy of it will be placed in the hands of 
every physician of the State, that the profession may be fully ac- 
quainted with the arrangements and policy of this great public 
charity. We regret that the medical profession is not more large- 
ly represented in the Board of Managers, as the character and 
objects of the Asylum are so closely identified with it, but we are 
happy in the belief that it is nevertheless ably represented, and 
that all will be done, that can be done, to give the Institution an 
exalted medical character, as it is already distinguished for its 
disinterested philanthropy. We give below a list of its officers. 


Hon. James Parker, Perth Amboy, Peesident. 
Thomas J. Stryker, Esq., Trenton, Secretary, 
Lewis W. R. Phillips, Esq., Lawrence. 
Rev. E. F. Cooley, Trenton. 
Stacy G. Potts, Esq., Trenton. 
Richard Stockton, Esq., Princeton. 
Charles Ridgway, M. D., Jacksonville. 
Isaac S. Mulford, M. D., Camden. 
John S. Darcy, M. D., Newark. 
William T. Anderson, Esq., Newton. 

Resident Officers. 

H. A. Buttolph, M. D., Superintendent and Physician. 
Mrs. Buttolph, Matron, 
Caleb Sager, Steward, 
Jasper S. Scudder, Treasurer. 


Report of the Select Committee of the House of Representatives of 
the United States; fi to whom was referred the subject of im- 
ported adulterated drugs, medicines, and chemical preparations,'' 1 

We are indebted to Dr. Newell, of New Jersey, our repre- 
sentative in Congress from this district, and a member of the 
committee, to whom the subject of imported adulterated drugs, 
&c, was referred, for a copy of their Report, from which we 
shall give a few extracts. The Report occupies twenty-three 
pages, and is an elaborate exposition of the frauds practised 
upon the people of this country by the foreign manufacturers 
of medicinal articles. The attention of Congress was directed 
to the subject by memorials from the American Medical Asso- 
ciation, the College of Pharmacy of New York, the Philadel- 
phia College of Pharmacy, and the Medical Society of New 
Jersey, and a Committee was selected, the majority of whom had 
made the study and practice of medicine the chief purpose of their 
lives; and who were fully competent to report on the subject com- 
mitted to them. It appears that •* on reference had, not long 
since, to the custom-house books in New Yook, it was found that 
7000lbs. of rhubarb root had been passed within ninety days, not 
one pound of which was fit, or even safe, for medicinal purposes. 
Much of it had become greatly deteriorated by age, was worm 
eaten and decayed, while other portions, notwithstanding they 
showed a somewhat fair appearance externally, (the color, &c, 
having been brightened by artificial means for the purpose of de- 
ception,) gave internal, unmistakeable evidence of the virtue of 
the root having been extracted by previous decoction, for the pur- 
pose of making what is sold as the * extract of rhubarb,' and there- 
by rendering it of no further value for medicinal use. This arti- 
cle was invoiced at from 2£ pence sterling (5 cents) to 7 pence 
(14 cents) per lb. The price of good rhubarb, at the place of 
production, has been, for several years past, about as follows; 
The East India, from 35 to 45 cents per lb., according to circum=- 
stances; the Turkey or Russian, from $1 25 to $2 50 per lb., ex- 
hibiting a very wide difference in price, as will be perceived, be- 
tween the good and refuse article. 



" Another of our more important articles of medicine, particu- 
larly in the newly settled portions of our country, comes to us in 
large quantities entirely unfit for medicinal purposes; but like the 
worthless rhubarb root, is eagerly bought up at auction sales by 
unprincipled drug dealers, and sent to the drug mills, where it is 
ground and powdered, the color, smell, and natural taste imitated, 
and afterwards sold to country dealers and others, as a good 
article. The result of this is, that it is finally dispensed to the 
sick, at the sacrifice doubtless, of many valuable lives every year: 
we mean the Peruvian bark" Also that " Opium, an article of 
priceless worth in the treatment of disease, is now sent to this 
country in a greatly and dangerously adulterated state; and as a 
proof that the fraud carried on in the preparation of this valuable 
drug, is now made not only a regular, but an extensive business, 
we are assured on most reliable authority, that it is shipped 
directly from Smyrna, the most important place of its production, 
deprived not unfrequently of two-thirds of its active principle, 
that proportion of its medicinal property having been extracted 
for the manufacture of morphine. Opium is found to be adulte- 
rated with Spanish liquorice paste, combined with a small quanti- 
ty of some bitter extract, and when but moderately deteriorated 
in this way, the fraud is not easily detected at first view; but it 
has been passed from Smyrna, by the way of some of the Euro- 
pean markets, so freely adulterated, that the fraud was readily 
detected merely by the smell I no analysis being necessary. The 
so called opium of this description is often found infested with 
living worms. Of course this decaying mass is not sold to the 
retailer or jobber in this condition, but is previously worked over 
and combined with a better quality of opium." 

A considerable portion of medicinal extracts, chemical prepa- 
rations, gums and gum-resins, are in like manner shamefully 
adulterated, and it is asserted by Dr. M. J. Baily, examiner of 
drugs &c, at the New York Custom House, than whom no one 
probably is more competent to judge, that "not a single pound of 
pure Aleppo scammony has passed the New York Custom House 
during the last twelve months." In addition to these glaring ex- 
posures, the following analysis of that vastly important prepara- 
tion, the blue pill mass, made by Professor Reid of New York, 


proves a still farther imposition in regard to this valuable medi- 
cine, which is well calculated to arouse efforts on the part of the 
government to arrest the fraud. 

"Mercury. ..... 7.5 

Earthy Clay ...... 27.0 

Prussian blue, used in coloring ... 1.5 

Sand, in combination with clay . . . 2.0 

Soluble saccharine matters . . . 34.0 

Insoluble organic matter .... 12.0 

Water ...... 16.0 


Thus it will be seen this spurious article contains less than one 
quarter of the active principle of the genuine, to say nothing of the 
indigestible earthy matter, &c." 

Sulphate of quinine, now so invaluable and necessary to the 
health of a large portion of our people, is variously adulte- 
rated with silicene, chalk, plaster of Paris, &c. — the most 
of it comes from an establishment in Belgium, the business of 
which is to manufacture imitations of most of the important fo- 
reign medicines. Calomel is also adulterated with a white argilla- 
ceous clay, and other articles which do not change its sensible 
properties, but which must greatly impair the value of the article. 
Dr. Baily of New York asserts that, "more than one-half of many 
of the most important chemical and medicinal preparations, to- 
gether with large quantities of crude drugs, come to us so much 
adulterated, or otherwise deteriorated, as to render them not only 
worthless as a medicine, but often dangerous." And as more 
than three-fourths of the entire amount of drugs imported pass 
through the Custom-house of that city, it may readily be imagined 
how far the whole country is affected by the deceptions of foreign 

The report further shows that the largest portion of these dete-. 
riorated medicines comes from England, and that the traffic is on 
the increase. In view of all these developements, the petitioners 
have asked for relief, and we are happy to furnish in our Eclectic 
department the bill passed by Congress, providing the remedy 
which has been sought at their hands. It has been sufficient to 
state the case to our representatives, without argument, and with 


entire unanimity they granted the request. If we may hope fW 
purer medicines hereafter, the people may hope for better health. 
The report of the Committee closes thus: 

" No one is exempt from attacks of disease. Soon or late all 
mankind need the aid of medicine. Oh! who has not thought, 
when pressed by the hand of affliction, and groaning under the 
many ills that flesh is heir to, of the happy home, the heritage of 
our first parents. One act of disobedience brought death and all 
its concomitant evils. We have seen it in the battle front; we 
hear its wail when famine and woe are near; it commenced its 
persecutions at our birth, and will only end them at our death. 
The All-wise Being has not left us without a solace. The bruised 
and perturbed spirit, the healing balm of a revealed religion, 
blesses and restores; for the sick and afflicted, a no less bountiful 
provision is made. Every kingdom in nature opens its bosom and 
stretches forth its hands to tender its benefits; every plant and 
flower, every hill-top, every valley, the mountain and the sea, all 
afford him curative agencies, challenge his interests, and awake 
his gratitude. 

" Surely, these blessings should not be frustrated; these gifts of 
kindness and comfort should not by man's invention and cupidity 
be perverted from their primitive design. The knowledge ex- 
pended in adulterating medicine can find no apologist. Connect- 
ed with it, is degradation and infamy, at which we well might 
startle. What opinions would we entertain of the cutler, who 
would prepare his instruments, either to break in the surgeon's 
hands, or with a refinement of cruelty, so construct the knife a9 
that its edge would turn on its first use. Destitution and want 
may drive a man to seize upon that which is his neighbor's, and 
we might in pity overlook the crime, or cover it with the mantle 
of charity; but the cool-blooded, deliberate, studied, and fatal de- 
ception practised in articles designed for the relief of suffering 
and disease, can admit of no palliation — can find no excuse." 





The present number completes the first volume of the New 
Jersey Medical Reporter. How far the anticipations of the pro- 
fession of the State have been realized in regard to its merits, and 
its claims upon them for support, we have no positive means of 
judging, except from the fact that the subscription list is ample 
enough to warrant its continuance, provided those who receive it 
will remit punctually the amount of subscription. For ourselves 
we have no pecuniary interest in the enterprise^ we have given to 
it one year's labor, and have agreed to give another^ but the prin- 
ter must be paid, and we invite special attention to the publisher's 
notice on the fourth page. 

It is our intention to continue the second volume, in the same 
manner, and upon the same terms as the first has been issued, and 
we ask the co-operation of our friends to sustain its interest, and 
to increase its value. It is a New Jersey periodical, intended as a 
medium of communication between the physicians of the State, 
and has been devoted thus far to the advancement and improve- 
ment of medical science, particularly within our own limits. We 
have also endeavored to rescue from obscurity the names and vir- 
tues of some of our earliest leaders, and shall continue to keep a 
record of a similar character. The oldest medical organization 
in the United States is maintained in New Jersey, and its records 
famish some of the best examples of medical skill and fidelity 
which have appeared in the new world : our fathers have earned 
for us a high and noble name, let us cherish and perpetuate it 
with filial devotion. 



The report of the delegates of the " Medical Society of New 
Jersey" to the American Medical Association, together with an 
abstract of the minutes of the Association, extracted from the 
«' Medical News," both of which will be found in our present 
number, will convey to our readers a very good idea of the course 
of proceedings of that interesting assemblage. 

The establishment of a National Medical Association upon a 
permanent basis, seems now to be realized, and the profession are 
beginning to feel the benefits flowing therefrom, in an improving 
system of medical education, in a more general feeling of concord 
and harmony throughout our ranks, in the discussion and elucida- 
tion of controverted medical topics, and in the elevation of the 
medical character and literature of the country. We anticipate 
a rich treat in the forthcoming volume of the proceedings, and we 
hope that an edition will be published large enough to enable the 
profession generally to possess themselves of the work. 

We have heard on all sides, expressions of lively satisfaction 
at the results of this meeting. The reports from all the Standing 
Committees were punctually presented, and manifested a degree of 
ability and industry on the part of the gentlemen composing them, 
highly creditable both to them, and to the Association. 

The only question which seems to have disturbed the general 
harmony, was the introduction of a matter aside from the general 
objects of the Association, which created a discussion partaking 
of a polemical character. Even this however, was of short dura- 
tion, and served we trust, to create a better understanding among 
those who honestly differed, while it suggests a caution to confine 
the labors of the Association in future, strictly within the limits 
prescribed by the order of business, and to subjects pertaining to- 
our own profession. 

The excellent synopsis of the proceedings furnished by the 
delegates from the New Jersey Medical Society, manifests a close 
attention to their duties, and a promptitude in reporting to the 
body from whom they received the appointment, which shows that 
our State was well represented. 



Death of Isaac S. Haines, M. D. 

It is grateful to the feelings of the living to dwell upon the good 
deeds of those who have been separated from them by death; and 
it is with a melancholy feeling that we take our pen to present a 
brief record of the life and character of a departed friend. It is 
melancholy to know that a friend has been called from our side, 
but it is pleasant to feel that he was a good man, and that he is 
resting with the spirits of just and good men made perfect. 

Dr. Haines was born in Evesham township, Burlington County, 
New Jersey, in the year 1808. lie was an only child, and was not 
permitted to go beyond the reach of parental care to obtain an 
education; but he received the best that his neighborhood could 
afford, and very early manifested an ardent desire to study medi- 
cine; he was discouraged from the undertaking by his friends, but 
so strong was his inclination for the pursuit, that he was placed 
under the care of the late Dr. Joseph Parrish of Philadelphia, in 
whose office he commenced his studies in the year 1829: he enter= 
ed the class of the University of Pennsylvania and graduated in 
1833. He now became engaged with a few others in examining 
students who were preparing for graduation; this employment, to- 
gether with his practice in the Philadelphia Dispensary, occupied 
much of his time for several years, when he removed to Burling- 
ton. He was particularly fond of the study of chemistry, and en- 
gaged in the preparation of a catechism adapted to the course of 
Chemical Lectures in the University, by Professor Hare. This 
soon became a deservedly popular work among the students, and 
is still used (having passed through three editions) as a valua- 
ble aid to the study of chemistry. Dr. Haines practised medicine 
in Burlington up to the time of his last illness. As a physician 
he was prudent and cautious, and attached himself to his patients 
by his fidelity to them in their afflictions, as well as by his skill 
in the management of their diseases. He occasionally gave popu- 
lar lectures on chemistry and botany, which were well received 
by those who were able to appreciate their merit. As a member 
of the Board of Censors for the county of Burlington, he was dis- 


tinguished for his fairness and promptness in examining upon the 
subjects of chemistry and materia-medica, which branches he al- 
ways preferred. His success in practice did not depend upon his 
sound medical judgment alone, but upon the interest which he 
manifested in the welfare of his patients, and his carefulness in 
watching over them: it was the kindness and benevolence of his 
heart, that made him beloved. Amiability was his chief charac- 
teristic, never querulous, but always conciliatory, he had no ene- 
mies, and he was no man's enemy. We speak of Dr. Haines from 
an intimate'acquaintance with him of many years duration. 

In his intercourse with his brother practitioners, he was as 
ready to give as to receive aid, and in consultations was scru- 
pulously careful to avoid the appearance of dictation or distrust, 
toward his associate in attendance. His practice was a laborious 
one. To the poor he was always attentive, visiting them by day 
and night, satisfied with the reward which a good man finds in 
the ability to minister to the necessities of the needy. But Dr. 
Haines is no more — he died in the 40th year of his age, on the 18th 
of 6th Mo. (June) last, of a low typhoid fever of seven weeks con- 
tinuance; during his illness he was cheerful and patient, and 
we cannot recur to our frequent visits to his bed-side, with- 
out the example of his quiet spirit rising before us, as worthy of 
all imitation. In the midst of health and prosperity and in the 
prime of life, he has been taken away from a world of toil and 
care, to a better land, where the weary are at rest. 

Let the memory of his retiring virtues, of his genuine simplicity 
of character, of his kindness to the poor, of his fidelity to his 
friends, and above all, of his meek and unpretending reliance 
upon the hopes and promises of religion, live in the hearts of his 
friends, and let them be consoled with the hope, that with the 
finishing of his work was the beginning of his everlasting reward* 


We arc indebted to our friend Zachariah Read, M. D., of Mount 
Holly, for the following Obituary Notices. 

Alexander Ross, M. D. 

Among the New Jersey physicians of the last century, mention 
should be made of Dr. Alexander Ross, who resided in Mount 
Holly, and practiced medicine there until the time of his death, 
which occurred on the 10th of May, 1780, aged 67 years. 

David Brainard Greenman, M. D. 

Dr. Greenman was a native of Pittsgrove, Salem county, New 
Jersey, his father was a minister of the Presbyterian church, from 
New England. He commenced the practice of medicine some- 
where in the state of Delaware, from whence he afterwards moved 
to Bordentown in this state, and finally to the city of Burlington, 
where he died of yellow fever in 1793. Dr. Greenman was high- 
ly esteemed as an intelligent and enlightened physician; his ca- 
reer was short, having died probably under thirty-five years of age. 

John Ross, M. D. 

Dr. John Ross, son of Dr. Alexander Ross, succeeded his father 
in the practice. He died in 1796, in the 43d year of his age. 

Stacy Budd, M. D. 

Dr. Stacy Budd was contemporary with Dr. John Ross, studied 
medicine with Dr. Alexander Ross, and practised for upwards of 
forty years in Mount Holly, was highly esteemed, and had a labo- 
rious practice; he was compelled to attend patients on the sea- 
board, fifty miles distant, owing to there being so few Physicians 
at that time. At one time he had under care six hundred inoc- 
ulated patients; his time was completely given up to his practice. 
The following obituary notice, taken I believe, from a Philadel- 
phia paper, will show his true character: " Died, at Mount Holly, 
New Jersey, on the 13th instant, Dr. Stacv Budd, in the sixty 


fourth year of his age, for many years an eminent and successful 
practitioner; a gentleman of unassuming manners; he was, con- 
spicuous for his affability, benevolence, and liberality, his abilities 
in his profession shone resplendently, and when sent for, either 
by day or night, it was not a question with him whether the per- 
son was poor or rich, but it was enough for him to know that a 
fellow creature was in distress, he hastened quickly, and as a 
good Samaritan administered to their relief; his conduct and de- 
portment endeared him to all, he lived respected, and died la- 
mented. His funeral was attended by an extraordinary number 
of his fellow citizens, on the 15th instant. Let the poor as they 
pass by his grave point at the little spot, and thankfully say, there 
lies the man whose unwearied kindness was the constant relief of 
my distresses, who tenderly visited my languishing bed, and rea- 
dily supplied my indigent circumstances. How often were his 
counsels a guide to my perplexed thoughts and a cordial to my 
dejected spirits." Dr. Budd died, February 13th, 1804. 

John Brognard, M. D. 

Dr. John Brognard resided at Black-horse (now Columbus.) 
He was a non-commissioned officer in the American army, after- 
wards he practiced medicine and was considered skillful. He 
died about the year J 820, at an advanced age. 

Benjamin S. Budd, M. D. 

Dr. Benjamin S. Budd, son of Dr. Stacy Budd, succeeded his 
father in practice, which he followed upwards of forty years; he 
attained to eminence, enjoyed in a remarkable degree the esteem 
and confidence of the community, and died in the year 1833, in 
the 66th year of his age. 

John L. Stratton, M. D. 

Dr. John L. Stratton, was contemporary with Dr. Benjamin S. 
Budd, was a native of Cumberland county, New Jersey; studied 
medicine with Dr. James Stratton of Swedesborough, attended 
the medical lectures in Philadelphia during the Professorship of 
Drs. Rush, Barton, &c, and was admitted to practice in 1799. 


The same year he came to Mount Holly and commenced prac- 
tice; in 1806 he removed to Burlington, and commenced business 
in conjunction with Dr. Nathan W. Cole; feeling that he had left 
many kind friends behind, and his prepossession being in favor of 
his first location, he did not remain long in Burlington, but in 
1807 returned to his former residence in Mount Holly; here he 
soon acquired the confidence of the people, and for many years 
did an extensive practice; finally, from close application to his 
business, his health gave way, and in 1839 he was compelled to 
relinquish in a great measure his practice, attending only to con- 
sultations, and the business of a number of families who were not 
willing to dispense with his services; his health however, rapidly 
declined, and he ceased to live in the year 1840, aged about 68 
years. Dr. Stratton was a man of ability in his profession, kind 
and conciliating in his manners, and much beloved in the com- 
munity in which he lived. In early life he was connected with 
the Medical Society of New Jersey, and served with much ability 
for several years, as one of the Censors for examining candidates 
for license. 

Death of Nathan W. Cole, M. D. 

It is our painful duty to announce the death of another of the 
physicians of the city of Burlington. Dr. Nathan W. Cole de- 
parted this life on the 18th of the present month. He was born 
at New Brunswick, New Jersey, in the year 1775, and was gradu- 
ated at Queen's (now Rutger's) College in that city in 1794. But 
one of the class of that year now remains, Dr. Henry Van Der- 
veer of Bedminster, Somerset county. 

Shortly after he had received his degree in the arts, he came to 
this place, and taught school for some time in the old Academy in 
Broad street. He attended the medical lectures of Shippen, Wis- 
tar, and others of the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania, 
at Philadelphia, and in 1801 he commenced the practice of medi- 
cine in Burlington, with what success the citizens of our town 
can testify. His kind and affable manner endeared him to all to 
whom he was called, and the gloom which pervaded the commu- 
nity when his death was announced, proves how ardently the 
people were attached to him. He lived beloved; and died full of 
years and honors. 




Abstract of the proceedings of the American Medical Association, 
at their meeting in Baltimore, May, 1848. 

The Association assembled in Baltimore, on Tuesday morning, 
May 2, and the proceedings were opened by a short and appro- 
priate address from the President, Dr. Chapman, of Philadelphia. 
The first day was occupied principally in receiving a report from 
the committee of arrangement, of the list of delegates to the asso- 
ciation; the report of the Treasurer, and the consideration of cer- 
tain resolutions having reference to preliminary matters, &c. 

Wednesday Morning, May 3 

On motion of Dr. Hays, a committee of one from each State re- 
presented, was appointed to nominate officers for the ensuing year, 
who reported the following nominations, which were unanimously 

President, — A. H. Stevens, of New York. 

Vice-President, — J. C. Warren, of Mass., Samuel Jackson, of 
Penn., Paul F. Eve, of Georgia, and W. M. Awl, of Ohio. 

Secretaries, — A. Stille, of Philadelphia, and H. J. Bowditch, 
of Boston. 

Treasurer, — Isaac Hays, of Philadelphia. 

The President being conducted to the chair, returned thanks in 
a brief and impressive address. 

On motion of Dr. West, the thanks of the association were pre- 
sented to its late officers, for the able, faithful and gentlemanly 
manner in which they had performed their duties. 

Copies of the code of ethics of the Philadelphia College of Phar- 
macy were presented, and the code was ordered to be inserted on 
the minutes. 

Dr. J. R. Wood presented a communication from the New 
York College of Pharmacy, regarding the importation and vend- 
ing of impure drugs, which was ordered to be placed on file. 

Dr. T. O. Edwards, a member of Congress from Ohio, and 
chairman of a special committee of the House of Representatives, 
to which was referred the subject of the importation of worthless, 
adulterated and misnamed drugs, was introduced to the associa- 
tion, and invited to address it. 

Dr, Edwards read a full and very interesting statement of the 


extent to which drugs are falsified, particularly with a view to 
their sale in the United States. * 

On motion of Dr. E. Hale, the thanks of the association were 
presented to the Hon. Dr. Edwards for his important and inte- 
resting communications, and a committee of five members was 
appointed to prepare and report to the association a memorial to 
Congress, on the subject. 

The following resolutions, introduced by Dr. C. C. Cox, were 
also referred to the same committee. 

Resolved, That a committee of five be appointed to report at 
the next meeting of the association — 

1st. The nature and extent of the sophistication and adultera- 
tion of drugs, as practised by the wholesale dealers and retail 

2d. The best means for the prevention of the evil in its various 

Committee, Drs. Parsons, Cox, Francis, Huston and Carr. 

Dr. Hays, from the committee on publication, presented a report 
with the following resolutions, which were adopted. 

Resolved, 1st. That the assessment for the present year be 
three dollars. 

2d. That voluntary contributions be invited. 

3d. That a copy of the printed proceedings be furnished to such 
members only of the association, as shall have paid the assessment 
for the year. 

4th. That those members of the association who shall pay five 
dollars, instead of the assessment of three dollars, shall be enti- 
tled to three copies of the proceedings. 

5th. That the committee on publication be authorized to make 
such arrangements for the sale of the transactions of the associa- 
tion as they may deem expedient, and to present copies to such 
public libraries, editors of medical journals, &c, as they may con- 
sider proper. 

The report of the standing committee on obstetrics was pre- 
sented, and read by the chairman, Dr. Harvey Lindsly, and re- 
ferred to the committee on publication. 

Invitations were presented to the association for the next meet- 
ing to be held in Boston, Washington, D. C, Columbus, Cincin- 
nati, Buffalo, Nashville, Charleston, and Newark, which were 
laid upon the table to be taken up in order. 

The following resolutions were presented and laid on the table 
for future consideration. 

By Dr. Stille — Resolved, That the delegations from the seve- 
ral States be earnestly requested to urge upon the deputations in 
Congress, of their respective States, the necessity of a law against 
the importation and sale of adulterated, deteriorated, and misnam- 
ed drugs, and recommending an enactment of the law presented 


by Dr. Edwards, the Chairman of the special committee of the 
House of Representatives, having charge of the subject. 

By Dr. T. F. Cock — Resolved, That the delegation of each 
State be requested at once to memorialize the Representatives of 
their State in Congress, with a view of forwarding the passage of 
a law regulating the sale of Drugs. 

By Dr. Cox — Resolved, That a committee of three be appointed 
by the association, to collate and digest the required information 
upon the subject of the abuse and adulteration of drugs, practised 
by wholesale dealers and retail druggists throughout the country, 
and to report such measures for the suppression and prevention of 
this growing evil, as will in their opinion, conduce to this end. 

Dr. Norris, chairman, presented and read a report from the 
standing committee on Surgery, and Dr. I. Parrish a report from 
the same committee, relative to the use of anaesthetic agents, both 
of which were referred to the committee on publication. 

Dr. Stewart laid upon the table the following resolution: — 

Resolved, That a committee of one from each State be appoint- 
ed to report to this association at its session to-morrow morning, 
the names of gentlemen to compose the various standing commit- 
tees for the present year, and that said committee be instructed 
to present the names of such members only as are in actual at- 
tendance. Adjourned. 

Wednesday Afternoon. 

The association was called to order by the President. 

On motion, the rules were suspended, to permit the considera- 
tion of the resolution offered by Dr. Stewart at the close of the 
morning session, which was then adopted, and the committee or- 
dered to consist of the same members as that appointed for the 
nomination of officers. 

On motion of Dr. W. Parker, the same committee were in- 
structed to report a place for the next meeting of the association. 

Dr. 0. W. Holmes, chairman, presented and read the report 
of the committee on Medical Literature, which was referred to 
the committee on publication. 

On motion of Dr. A. L. Pierson, the association proceeded to 
consider so much of the reports on obstetrics and surgery, as re- 
lates to the use of anaesthetic agents, and Dr. J. C. Warren made 
some interesting observations on the subject. 

Dr. Hamilton presented the following resolution:— 

Resolved, That considering the present limited amount of au- 
thentic facts, in relation to the danger or safety of anaesthetic 
agents in medicine, surgery, and obstetrics, this association is not 
now prepared to determine upon their value, or to the propriety 
of their use, and that the subject be referred to a special commit- 
tee, who shall report at the next annual meeting. 

Owing to the lateness of the hour, action on this resolution was 


postponed, and it was, at a subsequent session, referred to the 
appropriate standing committees. Adjourned. 

Thursday Morning, May 4. 

The President called the meeting to order. The minutes of 
yesterday's meetings were read and accepted. 

After some preliminary matters were gone through with, Dr. 
Cohen, of Baltimore, presented the following resolutions, which 
were adopted. 

Resolved, That the American Medical Association regards with 
pride and satisfaction, the services rendered, and the position 
maintained by that portion of the profession associated with the 
military department of the country; and in consideration of the 
severe and arduous duties which the medical officers have per- 
formed, the risks and dangers to which they have been exposed 
in the performance of those duties during a period of warfare, and 
in an unhealthy climate, it is deemed just and proper by this as- 
sociation, that their services should receive from the government 
an acknowledgment, corresponding to that awarded to their bro- 
ther officers. 

Resolved, That the members of this body hereby express their 
gratification with the position recently assigned the medical offi- 
cers of the navy, and their influence will be used to sustain their 
naval brethren in a position alike due to them and the profession 
of which they are members. 

Resolved, That a copy of these resolutions be forwarded to the 
Secretaries of War and of the Navy, through the chiefs of the 
medical departments of each service, and to the chairman of the 
military and naval committees in each House of Congress. 

Dr. Wynn presented a communication from the medical de- 
partment of the National Institute, on the subject of hygiene, and 
offered a resolution that the communication be referred to a select 
committee of five, which was adopted, and the following com- 
mittee were appointed: — Drs. J. Wynn, J. M. Thomas, O. W. 
Holmes, Isaac Parrish, and G. L. Corbin. 

Dr. Roberts presented a memorial from the naval medical corps 
of the United States, and offered a resolution that it be referred 
to the committee on publication, which was adopted. 

The committee appointed to nominate the standing committees, 
reported the following nominations, which were adopted. 

Committee of Arrangements. — Drs. Jacob Bigelow, E. Hale, 
Z. B. Adams, — Dalton, John Ware, 0. W. Holmes, N. J. Bow- 
ditch, of Boston. 

Committee on Med. Sciences. — Drs. L.P. Yandell, Ky.; Smith, 
Ohio; White, do.; E. S. Carr, Vt.; S. Jackson, Penn.; Upshur, 
Va.; Harris, Tenn. 

Committee on Pract. Med. — Drs. Condie, Penn.; Gerhard, do.; 
Clymer, do.; John Ware, Boston; G. Tyler, D. C; Fithian, 
N. J.; Kreider, O. 


Committee on Surgery. — Drs. N. R. Smith, Md.; Askew, Del. y 
Baxley, Md.; Knight, Conn. ; Pancoast, Penn.; McGuire, Va.; 
Shipman, Ind. 

Committee on Obstetrics. — Drs. Wellford, Va.; Peebles, do.; 
N. Young, D. C; Z. B. Adams, Mass.; C. R. Gilman, N. Y.; 
J. A. Eve, Ga.; Rouse, III. 

Committee on Med. Literature. — Drs. J. P. Harrison, Ohio; 
Breese, do.: Edwards, 111.; Latta, Ind.; Holmes, Mass.; Stewart, 
Md.; Thomas, D. C. 

Committee on Med, Education. — Drs. F. C. Stewart, N. Y.; 
John Watson, do.; J. M. Smith, do.; A. L. Pierson, Mass.; Pen- 
nington, N. J.; Gaillard, S. C; Meeker, Ind. 

Committee on Publications. — Drs. I. Hays, Penn.; Stille, do.; 
Condie, do.: Bowditch, Mass.; Dunbar, Md.; Barker, Conn.; 
Jump, Del. 

The committee also recommended the city of Boston for the 
next meeting of the association. The report was accepted, and 
the nominations confirmed. 

Dr. Wellford presented and read a report from the standing 
committee on Medical Education, accompanied with a series of 
resolutions, which were amended and adopted as follows: — 

1. Resolved, That this association considers defective and erro- 
neous every system of medical instruction, which does not rest on 
the basis of practical demonstration, and clinical teaching, and 
that it is therefore the duty of the medical schools to resort to 
every honorable means to obtain access for their students to the 
wards of a well-regulated hospital. 

2. Resolved, Therefore, that this association earnestly and res- 
pectfully appeal to the trustees of Hospitals to open their wards for 
the purposes of clinical instruction, satisfied that they will there- 
by more efficiently aid the cause of humanity, and more perfectly 
accomplish the benevolent intentions of the founders of the charity. 

3. Resolved, That the practice of appointing physicians and sur- 
geons to the charge of an hospital on political, or other grounds 
than those of professional and moral worth, is inconsistent with 
the welfare of its inmates, and of consequence, inhumane and un- 
just, subversive of the objects of its founders, and incompatible 
with a conscientious appreciation of the high responsibilities de- 
volved on the appointing power. 

4. Resolved, That this committee reiterate, and strongly re- 
commend to the association, a practical observance of the resolu- 
tions appended to the report of the committees on preliminary 
education, and on the requisites for graduation, submitted to the 
medical convention, which assembled in Philadelphia, in May, 

5. Resolved, That the faculties of the different schools be re- 
quested and advised to institute daily or weekly examinations, re- 
capitulatory of the previous lecture or lectures, and take such 


measures as may enable them to ascertain the regular attendance 
of the students upon the lectures up to the close of the term. 

6. Resolved, That this association recommend to the faculty of 
each medical school to conduct the final examination of candi- 
dates for diploma, in presence of some official person or persons, 
properly qualified to recognize the attainments of the candidate, 
but who has no pecuniary interest in the institution, or in the 
number of its pupils. 

7. Resolved, That it be also recommended, that, in view of the 
usual inaugural Thesis, or in addition thereto, each candidate for 
the diploma, be required to present to the faculty, at or before 
the time of final examination, a report drawn up by himself, and 
from his personal observation, of not fewer than^ue cases of dis- 
ease, and upon which he shall be duly examined. 

8. Resolved, That the faculty of each medical school be re- 
quested annually, and as early as possible, to furnish the chair- 
man of the committee on education with a statement of the num- 
ber of pupils and of graduates in their respective schools, too-ether 
with such other information as may expedite the labors of the 
committee, and enable it to discharge the duties assigned by the 
constitution under which it acts. 

Dr. J. M. Smith, chairman of the standing committee on Practi- 
cal Medicine, gave a short sketch of his report, and on motion he 
was requested to transmit a copy of the report to the committee 
on publication. 

Dr. Hays asked permission to inquire whether it was the sense 
of the association in referring the minutes, reports of the stand- 
ing committees with the accompanying documents and other pa- 
pers, to the committee on publications, that these should be pub- 
lished entire, or that the committee should have discretionary 
powers? — when on motion it was resolved, that discretionary 
powers be vested in the committee. 

Thursday Afternoon, May 4. 

Dr. Usher Parsons, from the select committee on the adultera- 
tion of drugs, presented the draft of memorial to Congress, which 
was ordered to be signed by the officers of the association, and 
sent to Dr. Edwards, chairman of the committee appointed by 
Congress on this subject. 

On motion of Dr. J. L. Atlee, a resolution was adopted, 
earnestly recommending to the physicians of those states in which 
State Medical Societies do not exist, to take measures to organ- 
ize State Societies before the next meeting of the American Me- 
dical Association. 

The committee to whom was referred the communication of the 

Medical Department of the National Institute, on the subject of 

hygiene, reported, recommending the appointment of a committee 

on hygiene, to consist of twelve members, to be appointed by the 



President, with power to fill vacancies. The following constitute 
this committee: — Drs. James Wjnn, Baltimore; Charles P. Gage, 
Concord, N. H.; J. M. Thomas, Washington, D. C; Isaac Par- 
rish, Philad.; P. C. Gaillard, Charleston; L. P. Yandell, Louis- 
ville; J. P- Harrison, Cincinnati; A. Smith, Peterboro', N. H.; 
J. Curtis, Louisville; E. H. Barton, N. 0.; J. H.Griscom, N. Y.; 
Turner, N.O. 

The report of the committee on indigenous botany, was pre- 
sented and referred to the committee on publication, and the 
documents which accompanied it, were referred back to the com- 
mittee, with a request that it would continue its researches. 

Friday Morning, May 5, 

The Association met at 9£ o'clock. On motion of Dr. J. C. 
Warren, the following resolution was adopted. 

Resolved, That in order to prevent the loss of time to the Asso- 
ciation, the committee of arrangement be requested to sit on the 
day before the annual meeting, and that all members who arrive 
on that day be desired to present their credentials without delay. 

On motion of Dr. G. L. Corbin, a committee of twelve was 
ordered to represent the Association at the meeting of the British 
Association, and of the Prov. Medical and Surgical Association, 
and the following were appointed: Dr. George B. Wood, of Phila- 
delphia; Jacob Bigelow, of Boston; and H. H. McGuire, of Win- 
chester, Va. 

On motion of Dr. Bowditch, the committee on hygiene were re- 
quested to investigate the effects of confinement in prisons and 
penitentiaries, and of discipline in general, in these institutions, 
on the health of the inmates, and report to the meeting of the 

On motion of Professor Jackson, the committee on hygiene were 
requested to direct their attention to the following subjects: 

1. What is the influence likely to be produced by the exten- 
sive introduction of tea and coffee into the diet of persons under 
the age of puberty ? 

2. What is the influence of the substitution of the luxuries of 
tea and coffee as food, upon the health of the laborious classes? 

Dr. Gordon Buck presented, with a drawing, a memoir, entitled 
"a new feature in the anatomical structure of the genito-urinary 
organs," which was referred to the committee on publication. 

On motion of Dr. Gulick, the members of the Association were 
requested to transmit to the chairman of the appropriate standing 
committees, the histories of any important cases which they may 
meet with in practice. 

On motion of Dr. R. H. Thomas, the delegates from medical 
societies, universities, colleges, &c, were requested to suggest to 
their several constituencies, the propriety of making an annual 
contribution towards the funds of this Association, in proportion 
to the number of copies of the proceedings desired by them. 


On motion of Dr. Upshur, the committee on publication were 
desired to append to the proceedings of the Association each 
year, a catalogue of its officers and permanent members. 

Dr. Stille presented a circular from the Philadelphia College 
of Pharm., with a resolution and memorial to Congress annexed, 
relative to the introduction and sale of spurious and sophisticated 
drugs, which were referred to the committee on publication. 

Various proposals for amending the constitution were offered, 
and, as required, laid on the table for consideration next year. 

On motion of Dr. Stille, it was unanimously resolved, that the 
thanks of the Association are hereby tendered to its committee of 
arrangements, and to the committee of reception of the delegates 
from Baltimore, for their constant and efficient exertions to pro- 
vide for the comfort and enjoyment of this body, to the Medical 
Faculty of the University or Maryland, to the Faculty of Wash- 
ington Medical College, and to the members of the medical pro- 
fession in this city, for their warm and courteous welcome, and 
hospitable entertainment, which have strengthened the bonds of 
pers.onal friendship and professional brotherhood, between them 
and the delegates from other parts of the United States. 

On motion of Dr. Baxley, the thanks of the Association were 
presented to the Hon. J. G. Davis, Mayor of the city of Balti- 
more, for facilities placed at the disposal of the committee of 
arrangements for promoting the comfort and convenience of the 

On motion of Dr. Biddle, the thanks of the Association were 
unanimously tendered to the President for the ability, courtesy, 
and impartiality with which he had discharged the duties of his 

A vote of thanks to the remaining officers was also passed, and 
the Association then adjourned sine die. — Medical News. 

Colica Pictonum, by James H. Johnson, M. D., one of the Physi- 
cians and Surgeons of the " St. Louis Hotel for Invalids." 

The pathology and treatment of Colica Pictonum, has for many 
years invited the attention and excited the minds of medical men. 
Its diagnostic similarity to other varieties of enteretic inflamma- 
tion, and spasmodic intestinal irritation, have served to mislead 
the profession, from what I conceive to be the true cause of the 
disease, and consequently has indirectly produced many errors in 

This article is not written with a view to explain all the physi- 
ological derangements, or abnormal appearances of the intestinal 
tube, but with a design to recommend a system of practice, which 


has proved generally successful in my hands, for a number of 
years, in the mining regions of northern Illinois, Wisconsin, and 

The following remarks are presented to the profession with 
some confidence, as the theory is based upon clinical observations, 
and post mortem examinations. I do not wish to assume, or 
claim any principle as new in Pathology, but to only insist upon 
the active indications of cure. Colica Pictonum. What is it? 
Truly a question more readily asked than answered. Professor 
Wood, in his late and valuable work on the practice of physic, 
says it l< produces the most exquisite pain." I do not know how 
exquisite a luxury pain may produce, but one thing I am con- 
vinced of, that the smelter's, or miner's cholic, is any thing but an 
exquisite disease to treat or counteract. 

It is useless for me to enter into the general symtomatology of 
the disease, as every medical man is presumed to understand its 
peculiar and various phases. 

The disease depends upon spasmodication of the smaller in- 
testines; the jejunum and illium, and frequently extends to the 
larger portion of the canal as far as the sigmoid fluxure of the 
colon. I have seen gangrenous errosions, which had been treated 
by clever men in the profession, as cases of intussusceptio, which 
erosions can only be accounted for upon the principle, that a com- 
pression upon the spinal marrow produces a paralysis of the pe- 
ristaltic action of the intestinal canal in consequence of the senso- 
rial fluid from some of the vertebral nerves being obstructed in its 
course. Hence a change of circulation followed by gangrene. 
I would invite the attention of the practitioner, to the peculiar 
expression, and langour of the countenance of the patien,t. The 
warm chest, yet, cold extremities, the glassy eye, milk furred, 
yet dry-pointed tongue, which, in connection with the contraction 
of the abdominal muscles, the palsied and drooping hand and con- 
tracted fingers, and faint efforts at vomiting, are the best pathog- 
nomonic symptoms of the disease. 

In reference to the exciting cause, I will speak from observa- 
tion, discarding many of the opinions entertained by distinguished 
gentlemen of the profession. Among the smelters in the mining 
regions meutioned, the disease is not from an Arcinite (as has 
been supposed,) which is so minutely divided as to impregnate 
the atmosphere in the neighborhood of the furnaces. The efflu- 
vium, always laying the foundation for the disease. I will also, 
affirm that lead, or preparations of lead, in the form of carbonate, 
frequently produces paralysis, general neuralgic symptoms, and 
in one case to my knowledge, Amaurosis, with all the concomi- 
tant symptoms, depending upon derangement of the cerebro-spi- 
nal axis, and that particular portion of the brain, the thalami ner- 
vorum opticorum, from which the optic nerve originates. This 


Case was owing to the use of the " cosmetics of the shops,'' which 
is a fine preparation of the carbonate of lead. 

I will here assert, that the remote cause of Colica Pictonum, 
and Rhacihialgia, in a majority of cases, appears to be^«ad intro- 
duced into the system, through the stomach, the lungs, or the 
skin. Hence, the disease is most frequently found in the neigh- 
borhood of the smelter's furnace, and the probability is, that the 
disease is more apt to occur from the fumes of the furnace, taken 
into the lungs, than from endermic or stomachic absorption. In 
the vicinity of the furnaces at Galena, animals, such as horses, 
oxen, pigs, and even poultry, are subject to the disease. The 
operative miners and citizens, generally, are under the belief that 
the exciting cause depends upon the water drank from the streams 
running below the wash-dams, &c. This is a popular error — pure 
water does not act upon the sulphuret of lead, consequently it is 
harmless. But lead is easily disintegrated and reduced to an 
oxyde, in the process of smelting, and exists in the atmosphere; 
thus, we may readily conceive why man and beast are alike sub- 
ject to the same disorder. Spring or river water is incapable of 
decomposing the sulphuret of lead in sufficient abundance to form 
either an oxyde or any of the salts that would prove injurious to 

Another error exists, not only in the minds of the people, but 
frequently with the practitioner, " that fatty, or oily food is a pre- 
ventive and cure of the disease," — as a profvlactic, it may be of 
service, but as remedial agents, none of the oleagenous prepara- 
tions can be depended upon. 

It is true, these agents may be indirectly serviceable in ordina- 
ry cases, but the direct indications of cure are more active. My 
practice is laid on the firm and solid foundation of experience and 
observation — an experience of several years — with every opportu- 
nity of close investigation, so far as regards the pathology of the 
disease, and the beneficial results derived from the following 

In the first place, counteract by all possible means the intesti- 
nal spasm — this is best done by large doses of proto. chl. hyd. 
and opium, say from 30 to 50grs. of the former combined with 
from 2 to 5 grs. of the latter, to be repeated at least once in three 
hours. In some cases opium may be given much oftener, as no 
idiosyncrasy ever occurs in cases of colica pictonum. In two 
hours after the last dose of calomel and opium, give from 2 to 4oz. 
of oil ricini combined with from 3 to 5gtt. of oil tiglii. Generally 
in a few minutes, a copious and free evacination will take place; 
if not, then commence injections, not a pint, or a quart, nor a 
gallon, but enough to distend the bowels. It sometimes may re- 
quire a large quantity of fluid — but continue, the object is, or 
should be distention — nature then will perform her function, 


Many eminent practitioners prescribe injections for the purpose 
of softening the intestinal foecal matter, and for increasing the 
peristallic motion of the bowels. The true principle in colica pic- 
tonum is to distend, and consequently to remove the intestinal 

In a mild degree, and under the best therapeutic plan, the dis- 
ease can seldom be removed under four or five days, but if it be 
neglected, or maltreated, it may continue for weeks, months, or 
even years, and then will terminate either in palsy of the upper 
extremities, depending as before remarked upon derangement of 
the cerebro spinal axis, partial, or complete amaurosis, deafness, 
delirium, or epileptic fits, and thus continue until death closes the 
eyes of the sufferer. 

After the primary practice recommended, as a neutralizing 
agent, I would mention the use of the sulphurated hydrogen gas. 
I have used it in many cases with decided advantage, and in fact, 
believe it to be the only remedy worthy the attention of the prac- 
titioner, in such forms of diseased action, where the patient is not 
at once restored to comparative health, subsequent to the acute 
attack passing off. 

It should be used in the form of a lemonade, the patient drink- 
ing from three to five common sized tumblers full every day. I 
am indebted to Dr. Henry King, a practical and scientific che- 
mist of this city, for the following formula, which he considers 
the most easy and convenient method of preparing, as all the ma- 
terials are within the reach of every physician, either in town or 

Prepare sidphuret of iron by rubbing a stick of sulphur on a 
hot bar of iron, and collect the melted materials, or by mixing 
flour of sulphur and iron filings, in the proportions of sixteen 
ounces of the latter with ten and a half of the former, and fusing 
them together in an earthen crucible. This should be done by 
putting the mixed materials into the crucible in small portions at 
a time, and allowing that which has been thrown in to become red 
hot before another portion is added. 

Add diluted sulphuric acid with about four times its volume of 
water, and allow it to cool. Place a small quantity of the sul- 
phuret in a vial or bottle, and pour upon it the diluted acid, 
close the vial or bottle with a cork perforated with a small glass 
tube bent into the form of a syphon. When the gas begins to be 
disengaged, insert the free end of the glass tube into a vessel of 
water, which will soon become saturated with the gas. If it be 
desirable to keep the water for some time, this operation should 
be performed in four or eight ounce vials, which should be subse- 
quently carefully corked and inverted. 

Sulphureted hydrogene water may also be made by placing the 
sulphuret of iron and diluted acid in a large bottle, and adding 


water until the whole is largely diluted. But in this case, a por- 
tion of the salt formed (sulphate of the prot-oxide of iron,) will 
be dissolved in the fluid. 

The diluted sulphuric acid is a valuable remedy in cases where 
the sulphurated hydrogen cannot be made or procured. Give it 
in large doses, repeated several times a day. — St. Louis Medical 
and Surgical Journal. 

Remarks on Chronic Diarrhoea and Dysentery, By Thompson 
McGown, M. D., of Hillsboro, Miss. 

It is at all times important to know how to head these diseases 
successfully, as well as all others, but has been rendered more so 
for some time past, and will probably be so, for some time to 
come, in consequence of the frequency of diarrhoea among our 
soldiers in Mexico; many of whom are so much prostrated by it 
that they are discharged from the service and sent home, where 
many of them under, proper treatment recover; while others who 
are improperly treated, succumb under its influence, or it and the 
medicine combined. It has been painful to me to observe the 
blind and obstinate treatment adopted in many cases, and the con- 
sequent want of success; and it appears that some who stand high 
in the profession, are not only lending their influence to this im- 
proper treatment, (as I conceive it to be) but are insisting upon 
its adoption and giving it publicity. This is admissible, however, 
as they believe they adopt the proper means, and their publicity 
may be of service to the profession; but here 1 join issue with 
them. They are no doubt honest in their convictions, but it 
seems to me that the frequent fatal results ought to cause men of 
such talents to pause and reflect, even if there were no respecta- 
ble authors who are opposed to such treatment. I allude to the 
empirical treatment of diarrhoea with calomel. Whether such 
persons administer it for its alterant effect, or its influence on the 
portal circle, with the false and delusive theory of Dr. Cooke, in 
their imaginations, I am not prepared to say, I know many exhibit 
it with this latter view. When will the great valley of the Mis- 
sissippi cease to feel the baneful influence of this theory, One 
who is familiar with the satire of Dr. Deavenport, might infer that 
many physicians have read the following, and taken it in its literal 

" giant minded Cooke! whose cava-pills, 
Have borne thy name, aloft, o'er vales and hills; 
Whose genius glows, on thy induction page, 
(That proudest fabric reared in any age.") 

I feel convinced that it would be much better to leave many of 
these chronic affections of the bowels, to the vis medicatix naturoe, 
than to persevere in this blind administration of mercurials. 


When diarrhoea is brought on by some irritating ingesta, the 
indications are plain: — give a mild laxative to remove the offend- 
ing matter, if the bowels have not already relieved themselves, 
and then administer an opiate — such as cam ph. tine. opii. But it 
is the chronic form of this affection to which I now particularly 
allude; — and when it is remembered that Dr. Stokes* (a man of 
considerable reputation and acknowledged ability,) does not even 
once speak of calomel or any other mercurial preparation in the 
treatment of chronic diarrhoea, it appears surprising that men who 
stand high in the profession, rely almost exclusive!} 7- upon them. 
Dr. Bell speaks of blue pill being good in some cases, sometimes 
alone, at others mixed with opium. Prof. Dunglison, after laying 
down the treatment of this affection, and it proves to be obstinate 
and not yield to the same, merely says " warm clothing, friction 
over the abdomen, occasional blisters, and slightly affecting the 
mouth by mercurials, have exerted a beneficial agency." In 
speaking of opiates he says: " They are, indeed, valuable agents 
in those affections, and in all the morbid conditions of the mucous 
membrane that are accompanied with discharges. In all cases, 
small doses of opium, or morphia, or its salts, are of themselves 
sufficient, with properly regulated diet." 

I will merely mention in a few words, that I have never found 
any cause to abandon the opiate and astringent treatment, or 
these combined with tonics, and under some circumstances, one 
or two grains of calomel, or some laxative, combined with tine, 
opii. Dr. Bell says, "the chief indication, after all, is that for 
allaying irritation, rather than for evacuating irritating matters." 
The mercurial treatment so empirically and obstinately adopted 
by many, often adds to the already inflamed condition of the mu- 
cous membrane of the alimentary canal. A large dose of calomel 
is almost sure to increase the inflammation and prostration, and 
often hurries the unfortunate sufferer to the ''bourne from whence 
no traveller returns." The same objections obtain in the too com- 
mon and indiscriminate administration of calomel in Dysentery. 
Dr. Bell says; "viewed anatomically, there is no essential differ- 
ence," in these two diseases. He further remarks; "you will see 
that, whilst I deprecate the empirical practice of giving mercury 
in dysentery, with a view to its sialagogue operation, I am not 
backward in using it with other views and to produce other effects. 
These are first, in conjunction with laxatives, to unload the bow- 
els of scybalce when they are present, or of mucous and remains of 
ingesta, which are so many causes of irritation." 

Need I adduce the names of practical men, who have recorded 
their experience against the curative value of mercurial ptyalism 
in dysentery? Mr. Twining says; "I have met with a vast num- 
ber of cases in which it had been used so as to produce salivation, 

* Vide Bell and Stokes' Practice, 1845. 


without curing the dysentery." Dr. Cheyne says, *■ in many in- 
stances, mercurial salivation was unequal to the cure, and in the 
ulcerated stage, and in cases in which emaciation had taken place, 
and in cases in which the tongue was florid and glazed, the mer- 
curial treatment was injurious." Mr. Annesly warns us against 
carrying the remedy so far as to affect the mouth, " for, in that 
case it generally depresses the powers of life too rapidly." Dr. 
Bell says, " if calomel fail to answer our expectations in this way, 
we ought not blindly to persevere in its use, with a view of in- 
ducing salivation. On the contrary, we ought to desist from its 
administration," &c. Prof. Dunglison says, •' it is a common re- 
mark, that if dysentery proves obstinate, it will yield, provided 
we can touch the mouth with a mercurial. This is not the result 
of the author's experience, he has seen many cases in which the 
effect of mercury has been induced on the system, and, neverthe- 
less, the disease has proceeded on to a fatal termination." He 
also speaks of a chronic form of diarrhoea, "dependant upon ul- 
cerations of the rectum. They occur chiefly in persons of broken 
down constitutions, and in such as have taken a great deal of 
mercury." I mi^ht quote other authors, to show the improprie- 
ty and damage of the mercurial practice in these affections. But 
I have already pointed to a sufficient number, to cause those who 
rely so much on calomel, to pause and reflect what injury they 
are often doing by persevering in its use. I might enter into de- 
tails, and increase the frightfulness of the picture, but wish to be 
brief. When the mucous membrane is inflamed or ulcerated, as 
it is in these diseases, the administration of calomel, especially in 
large doses, adds to the already morbid condition, — increases the 
pathological condition, depresses the vital powers, and hence, 
tends to render the situation of the patient worse. According to 
my experience, the most rational treatment is the soothing — 
opiates, astringents, demulcents, mild aperients, when necessary, 
&c, husbanding the vital powers, with a properly regulated diet 
— well boiled rice> gruel, chipped dried venison hams, and such 
light and nourishing articles of diet as agree with the patient. 

It is so common for those who have chronic diarrhoea to die, 
when under the care of those who rely almost solely on calomel, 
that it has been painful to me to look over the reports of Prof. 
Harrison, respecting the treatment in the hospital at Cincinnati, 
followed by so many fatal results. He says; " during the whole 
of 1846, fifty-six cases of diarrhoea were brought into the hospital, 
and of these twenty-five died." Nearly half. An allowance 
should be made, however, as he says some of these twenty-five 
were brought into the hospital, almost'in articulo mortis. It would 
seem from his language that very few were brought in, in this 
condition. It appears that he relies mostly on mercurials, adding 
other adjuvantia. Balsam copaiva it appears was used in some 



cases; but, Prof. II. says it "did not in our hands answer the ex- 
pectation which we once entertained of its efficacy." Are not 
such results as these, calculated to add to the opprobrium of an 
elevated and honorable profession ? If we were to be so unsuccess- 
ful in this region of country, we would soon cease to be employ- 
ed. As much confidence as I have in calomel, in cases where it 
is proper to give it, if I had chronic diarrhoea, I would not place 
myself, (nor could I advise those who might consult me,) under 
the care of those M. D's. who rely so much on calomel. I will 
here remark, that I do not approve of the administration of Do- 
ver's powder in chronic diarrhoea, nor in fevers in which there is 
tenderness of the bowels, or a disposition to diarrhoea. The opi- 
um that is in them, may allay the irritation for a time, but when 
its effects have modified or ceased, the sulph. potas. often adds to 
the existing inflammation. This is also the case with calomel, 
when freely given, with opium. I have it from good authority, 
that a practitioner lost 8 cases out of 9, who adopted this latter 
practice. When diarrhoea is of long standing, we are informed 
that it is sometimes kept up by an ulcer in the rectum near the 
verge of the anus, which may be cured by the application of Ni- 
tras. Argent. It is said to "occur chiefly in persons of broken 
down constitutions, and those who have taken a great deal of 
mercury." That form to which females of certain temperament, 
or condition of the system, are liable, should also receive the pro- 
per treatment — the ferruginous preparations being the main reli- 
ance. But my object is not to speak in detail, or extensively on 
the subject. I wish to call attention to the subject, that it may 
be investigated. I have hastily thrown together a few ideas, with 
the hope that they may be of some service to the profession. It 
is with much deference that I have called in question, views en- 
tertained by some who stand high in the profession; but, I hope 
my desire to see the profession guided by correct principles and 
consequent success, is sufficient apology. — Western Lancet. 

A Bill to prevent the importation of adulterated and spurious 
Drugs and Medicines. 

1 . Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives 
of the United States of America in Congress assembled. That, 
from and after the passage of this act, all drugs, medicines, medi- 
cinal preparations, including medicinal essential oils and chemi- 
cal preparations used wholly or in part as medicine, imported into 
the United States from abroad, shall, before passing the Custom- 
house, be examined and appraised, as well in reference to their 
quality, purity, and fitness for medical purposes as to their value 
and identity specified in the invoice. 


Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That ail medicinal prepara- 
tions, whether chemical or otherwise, usually imported, with the 
name of the manufacturer, shall have the true name of the manu- 
facturer, and of the place where they are prepared, permanently 
and legibly affixed to each parcel, by stamp, label or otherwise; 
and all medicinal preparations imported without such names affix- 
ed, as aforesaid, shall be adjudged to be forfeited. 

Sec. 3. And belt further enacted, That if, on examination, any 
drugs, medicines, medicinal preparations, whether chemical or 
otherwise, including medicinal essential oils, are found, in the 
opinion of the examiner, to be so far adulterated, or in any man- 
ner deteriorated as to render them inferior in strength and purity 
to the standard established by the United States, Edinburgh, Lon- 
don, French, and German pharmacopoeias and dispensatories, and 
thereby improper, unsafe, or dangerous to be used for medicinal 
purposes, a return to that effect shall be made upon the invoice, 
and the articles so noted shall not pass the Custom-house, unless, 
on a re-examination of a strictly analytical character, called for 
by the owner or consignee, the return of the examiner shall be 
found erroneous; and it shall be declared, as the result of such, 
analysis, that the said articles may properly, safely, and without 
danger, be used for medicinal purposes. 

Sec. 4. And be it further enacted. That the owner or consignee 
shall, at all times, when dissatisfied with the examiner's return, 
have the privilege of calling, at his own expense, for a re-exami- 
nation; and on depositing with the collector such sum as the latter 
may deem sufficient to defray such expense, it shall be the duty 
of that officer to procure some competent analytical chemist, pos- 
sessing the confidence of the medical profession, as well as of the 
colleges of medicine and pharmacy, if any such institutions exist 
in the State in which the collection district is situated, a careful 
analysis of the articles included in said return, and a report upon 
the same under oath; and in case the report, which shall be final, 
shall declare the return of the examiner to be erroneous, and the 
said articles to be of the requisite strength and purity, according 
to the standards referred to in the next preceding section of this 
act, the entire invoice shall be passed, without reservation, on 
payment of the customary duties; but, in case the examiner's re- 
turn shall be sustained by the analysis and report, the said arti- 
cles shall remain in charge of the collector, and the owner or con- 
signee, on payment of the charges of storage and other expenses 
necessarily incurred by the United States, and on giving a bond 
with sureties satisfactory to the collector, to land said articles out 
of the limits of the United States, shall have the privilege of re- 
exporting them at any time within the period of six months after 
the report of the analysis. But, if the said articles shall not be 
sent out of the United States within the time specified, it shall be 


the duty of the collector, at the expiration of said time, to cause 
the same to be destroyed, holding the owner or consignee respon- 
sible to the United States for the payment of all charges, in the 
same manner as if said articles had been re-exported. 

Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, That in order to carry into 
effect the provisions of this act, the Secretary of the Treasury is 
hereby authorized and required to appoint suitably qualified per- 
sons as special examiners of drugs, medicines, chemicals, and so 
forth, namely, one examiner in each of the ports of Boston, New- 
York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Charleston, and New Orleans, ' 
with the following salaries, viz: at New York, sixteen hundred 
dollars per annum, and at each of the other ports above named, 
one thousand dollars per annum, which said salaries shall be paid 
each year quarterly, out of any monies in the Treasury not other- 
wise appropriated. And it shall be the duty of the said Secreta- 
ry to give such instructions to the collectors of the customs in the 
other collection districts as he may deem necessary to prevent the 
importation of adulterated and spurious drugs and medicines. 

Sec. 6. And be it further enacted, That the special examiners 
to be appointed under this act, shall, before entering on the dis- 
charge of their duties, take and subscribe the oath or affirmation 
required by the ninth section of the act of the thirtieth of July, 
eighteen hundred and forty-six, entitled '* An act reducing the 
duty on imports, and for other purposes." 

Sec. 7. And be it further enacted, That the special examiners 
authorized to be appointed by the fifth section of this act shall, if 
suitably qualified persons can be found, be taken from the officers 
now employed in the respective collection districts, and if new 
appointments shall be necessary, for want of such persons, then, 
as soon as it can be done consistently with the efficiency of the 
service, the officers in said districts shall be reduced so that the 
present number of said officers shall not be permanently increased 
by reason of such new appointments. 

Lunar Caustic for Cough. — Dr. Post, in a case of distressing 
cough, which came on at night and lasted for several hours, used, 
with the happiest effects, a strong solution of arg. nit. applied to 
the fauces. No disease could be detected in the chest, but the 
uvula was enlarged, and the pharynx and fauces were somewhat 
redder than natural. A solution of two scruples to one ounce of 
water was applied, and with complete relief, though the cough 
just before had been violent; and the patient remained almost free 
from it for the next twenty- four hours. — Annalist. 


Library of the Medical School 

The Warren Library 

Dr. John Warren 


Dr. John Collins Warren 

• 1778-1856 

Dr. Jonathan Mason Warren 


Dr. John Collins Warren 

Dr. John Warren 

$ -w